Sadie by Courtney Summers

Intense and emotional. I couldn’t put the book down.  Author Courtney Summers’s novel will haunt readers after they’ve turned the final page. While the ending will not leave some (ME!) entriely satified, the book tackles themes that every parent hates to think might happen to a child, especially their child. This was not an easy book to read with many possible triggers including drug addiction, sexual assault, and child abuse, but so well done that readers will be reaching for tissues or living the anger Sadie, the protagonist,  emotes.

34810320._SY475_Sadie’s first person point of view is  interspersed with West McCray’s podcast. Both gather clues. Sadie want’s to find one of her mother’s boyfriend and get revenge for a horrible thing he did. McCray wants to find Sadie. I wasn’t sure I would enjoy the disjointed narrative, but it never felt that way.  Instead, I loved how the pieces of the narrative puzzle connected by the end.

Sadie jumped off each and every page. She damaged and seeking revenge. She doesn’t understand how amazing she was for taking care of her sister Mattie, she still searches for the good and gentle when her entire life has been anything but that. “I would let his gentleness take me somewhere else,  let myself pretend what it might be like to belong to someone” (91). Because she still has hope for a better future, so do readers. This is also why there is a special place in my heart for Javi and Ellis, two minor characters, who show Sadie that the world is not all bad. 

The writing is wonderful from the details describing characters to the imagery.  “I swallow hard, lick my lips, the ghost taste of the shot still on them” (91). The characters aren’t flat or stereotypical. Many aren’t likable, but they come across as entirely realistic. That means you will meet plenty of assholes and liars along the way.

While considered young adult, Sadie was not written for teens. It connects to all people, no matter what age. While I love this book, I’m still struggling with the end. I NEED MORE. If you want closure, be prepared to be disappointed, but the reader gets enough that the book feels both satisfying and complete. Cliffhanger, not really, but maybe. Closure. No. Read it anyway.  Five huge, bright stars.

Need more about the ending? Check out

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