Review: Far from You by Tess Sharpe


16151118Far from You by Tess Sharpe

My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars
Received: Hachette Book Group
Publication Date: March 27th, 2014
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Point of View: 1st Person & Feminine
Recommended Age: 11+
Pacing: Normal
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Contemporary, mystery, LGBT

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BLURB:

Sophie Winters nearly died. Twice.

The first time, she’s fourteen, and escapes a near-fatal car accident with scars, a bum leg, and an addiction to Oxy that’ll take years to kick.

The second time, she’s seventeen, and it’s no accident. Sophie and her best friend Mina are confronted by a masked man in the woods. Sophie survives, but Mina is not so lucky. When the cops deem Mina’s murder a drug deal gone wrong, casting partial blame on Sophie, no one will believe the truth: Sophie has been clean for months, and it was Mina who led her into the woods that night for a meeting shrouded in mystery.

After a forced stint in rehab, Sophie returns home to a chilly new reality. Mina’s brother won’t speak to her, her parents fear she’ll relapse, old friends have become enemies, and Sophie has to learn how to live without her other half. To make matters worse, no one is looking in the right places and Sophie must search for Mina’s murderer on her own. But with every step, Sophie comes closer to revealing all: about herself, about Mina and about the secret they shared.

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This book must be super annoyed with me. I mean, I did add it to my to-read shelf and un-add it over and over again.

But hopefully, it will forgive me, as I enjoyed my time with it.

Sophie is in rehab. Mina was killed. But Sophie isn’t an addict anymore. And Mina had no enemy. So what happened? Who killed Sophie’s best friend?

I’m not going to lie, this is a book like many others in terms of mystery. You have a case which is, of course, linked to the main character, and you have the main characters spending the novel’s duration trying to find the Truth.

What is surprising is that it doesn’t only focus on the murder case. It also centers a lot on Sophie and Mina’s relationship. As you can see, the novel is shelved under ‘‘LGBT,’’ and you can quite easily guess why, so I’m not going to say anything more.

I liked that. And I also liked how the author was playing with time, going back and forth until everything she wanted revealed became revealed. It made things more interesting and, because the chapters are very short, I always felt compelled to read one more, and one more, and one more before taking a break.

Although there is romance, this is not a romance novel, since the theme is limited. It does focus a lot on the dynamics between Sophie and Mina, but more so to understand how their relationship evolved than to unfold a love story before our eyes.

As with the majority of mystery/thriller YA novels, I liked the ride – the clues, the guessing and the drama those two things brought – but the ending AKA revelation to the mystery/murder case did not so much impress me as much as make me think that the author REALLY wanted the murderer to be someone we wouldn’t expect, which is not *always* the right way to go about a mystery novel’s ending.

Recommended novel for its characters, LGBT theme and atmosphere!
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