Released April, 2013
12 Hours, 15 Minutes (405 Pages)
Bottom Line: Read it.
Affiliate Link: Buy from Amazon
After the studious and athletic Amelia jumps to her death from the roof of her exclusive Brooklyn girls’ school, her mother (Kate) sets out to learn more about the events surrounding her daughter’s death.
After bombing with my first audiobook, Delicious!, I was looking for something more fast paced and Reconstructing Amelia was just the ticket! It’s hard not to get hooked quickly when there is a dead body in the first few chapters.
The beginning of Reconstructing Amelia is basically a riff on the beginning of “Gossip Girl” (the TV show)…except with a dead body instead of a missing Serena Van Der Woodson. It even has a “Gossip Girl”-esque blog called “Gracefully Yours” with the tagline:
Because there are 176 definitions of the word loser on urbandictionary.com. Don’t Be A Statistic.
I loved the twisty, turny plot and the suspense of trying to figure out the details surrounding Amelia’s death. Did she jump, as the police think? Or was it something more sinister? There were lots of plot twists…some not that surprising and some very surprising. And, the plot ended up being more complicated than I expected…in a good way!
Beyond the exciting plot, Reconstructing Amelia deals with real issues that give it more depth than your average teenage thriller. You’ve got secret clubs, bullying, teen angst, sexuality, and social media. It illuminates the struggle of the single working mom…how does she balance it all and how is she perceived by other parents? Finally, it tackles what has been a recurring theme in my reading this year: how well do parents really know their children? How much privacy should a parent allow their child? How does social media affect their behavior?
I did think some of the teen voices on the audio were annoyingly “OMG” to listen to, especially Sylvia’s (Amelia’s best friend). But, it didn’t bother me that much because the story is told through Amelia’s and her mother’s alternating perspectives…and, thankfully, Amelia’s voice is normal. She’s also a relatable and likable character that I was rooting for.