Publication Date: October 4, 2016
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
A Young Adult novel
Genre: Contemporary, Mystery
Flynn's girlfriend has disappeared. How can he uncover her secrets without revealing his own?
Flynn's girlfriend, January, is missing. The cops are asking questions he can't answer, and her friends are telling stories that don't add up. All eyes are on Flynn—as January's boyfriend, he must know something.
But Flynn has a secret of his own. And as he struggles to uncover the truth about January's disappearance, he must also face the truth about himself.
I will not lie, the second half of the book really did pick up the pace and grab my attention. Last Seen Leaving opens with one of the most captivating and alluring first paragraph that I have seen in quite some time. It starts out strong, sinks into a little puddle of slow and bothersome, and picks right back up again like an express train right to your station.
Disclaimer: his novel does touch upon the sensitive subject of rape. That being said, it also gives us a fleshed out teenager on the verge of understanding his sexuality all the while coming to terms with the fact that his girlfriend has been decreed missing. What a crazy time to be alive. Roehrig has a fascinating command of dialogue, witty narrative, and really allows his cast of characters to come alive in their voices. On the other side, there are some characters whose abrasive nature are the only trait they possess, whom aren't given enough screen time to be fleshed out, or secrets that are never truly revealed in the end. And while it does bug me, I understand the need to get the biggest secret disclosed. I only wish to have a little more light shone on certain moments, like January's need to string together a slew of lies about Flynn. But being someone who, like Flynn, gets strung up on the vital and obscure information that no one else would know meanwhile having to just rely on your gut instinct, I can face the fact that not all secrets can be revealed.
Overall, I was pleasantly surprised with how much I really enjoyed the mystery behind it all. Even though, by the end of it, all of my inner understanding of the legal process thanks to television had me screaming at the stupid decisions Flynn ends up making despite the means to further the plot. Why must stupid, unlawful actions further plot? I digress. Throughout, I was actually using my hand to cover the bottom parts of the page just so my eyes didn't wander and spoil the secrets for me. I am very bad at spoiling myself.
This seems to be my month of mystery novels
Caleb Roehrig is a writer and television producer originally from Ann Arbor, Michigan. Having also lived in Chicago, Los Angeles, and Helsinki, Finland, he has a chronic case of wanderlust, and can recommend the best sights to see on a shoestring budget in over thirty countries. A former actor, Roehrig has experience on both sides of the camera, with a résumé that includes appearances on film and TV—as well as seven years in the stranger-than-fiction salt mines of reality television. In the name of earning a paycheck, he has: hung around a frozen cornfield in his underwear, partied with an actual rock-star, chatted with a scandal-plagued politician, and been menaced by a disgruntled ostrich.
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