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Tuesday, June 10, 2014

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ARC Review: The Body in the Woods by April Henry

The Body in the Woods by April Henry

Point Last Seen #1
April Henry
Publication Date: June 17, 2014
Publisher: Henry Holt and Co.

In this new series told from multiple perspectives, teen members of a search and rescue team discover a dead body in the woods.

Alexis, Nick, and Ruby have very different backgrounds: Alexis has spent her life covering for her mom’s mental illness, Nick’s bravado hides his fear of not being good enough, and Ruby just wants to pursue her eccentric interests in a world that doesn’t understand her. When the three teens join Portland County Sheriff’s Search and Rescue, they are teamed up to search for a autistic man lost in the woods. What they find instead is a dead body. In a friendship that will be forged in danger, fear, and courage, the three team up to find the girl’s killer—before he can strike one of their own.

This first book in April Henry’s Point Last Seen YA mystery series is full of riveting suspense, putting readers in the middle of harrowing rescues and crime scene investigations.
Advanced Copy provided by Henry Holt & Co. for Review via Netgalley – thanks!

I think I'm reading books too fast for the following reasons:
  • It was spring break. I probably got cabin fever. 101°F most likely
  • It was short, compared to a lot of other books I typically really, which are usually 350+
  • It really was action-packed and suspenseful
The last part is a fact, and to my embarrassment, I didn't realize April Henry was the exact same author who wrote Girl, Stolen which I actually loved (I forgot if it was Book Battle, Truman Readers Award Nominee, or both). Or maybe I just forgot who the author was. Whoops.

The Body in the Woods follows multiple perspectives – Alexis, Nick, Ruby, and why yes, the murderer on the occasional basis of creepiness. e_e *ominous music* Alexis' is someone who doesn't let others become close to her (sounds like me) and has a delusional mother who hates her medication, Nick had no father figure for most of his life and tries getting attention just to fit in, and Ruby has interests no one else seems to understand. But while all of that is true, there seems to be one thing in common between the three: they're odd and simply want to fit in with the world.

All three are part of Portland's Search and Rescue, which is actually mainly made up of teen volunteers who search for missing people. While on the search for a missing man in Forest Park – no, not the one in Missouri where the Muny is at – they end up finding a girl... dead.

The multiple POVs actually had a handy advantage: it pretty much kept me at the edge of my seat. A chapter ends at a suspenseful part, I turn the page in hopes of finding out what happens and I end up with a different person entirely. Unfortunately though... there were these random POVs from other people that just seem to pop out of nowhere and proved to be a bit of a distraction from the main 4.

Well written and page turning, The Body in the Woods reminded me of CSI from a witnesses' and murderer's point of view instead of law enforcement. Not bad for April Henry's latest novel, even if I only read one other book. It'll be great for mystery peeps though!

4 Owls

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Sophia is the owner and founder of Bookwyrming Thoughts, but also found on various parts of the internet. She's a 19-year-old communications major who has weird humor and doesn't fit the Asian stereotype (maybe a little). Books, chocolate, technology, and music are among some of her favorite things. For more of her work, visit her personal website.