Be Not Far From Me – Mindy McGinnis

34604348. sy475 Be Not Far From Me by Mindy McGinnis

My rating: 2 of 5 stars
Received: HarperCollins Canada
Published: March 3rd, 2020
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Recommended Age: 12+
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Survival, Aloneness, Reminiscing


This is not what I expected from Mindy McGinnis. I read her The Female of the Species, really enjoyed it, and could not wait to dive into this one.

But it was so dull. It’s hard to believe that a story about survival, getting lost into the woods and facing obstacles could be so uneventful. And predictable.

It’s also very unoriginal. Ashley literally gets lost into the woods because she runs away from a scene she witnessed between her boyfriend and another girl. I understand how cheating can deeply affect someone, and I get the running away to escape and clear your mind, but… it’s such a boring reason for getting lost.

I do enjoy McGinnis’ writing style. She knows how to create an atmosphere in her stories, and I certainly felt Ashley’s aloneness in the wide, wide woods. But because she is alone in the quiet (sometimes disrupted by animals noises), we are in her mind throughout the ‘‘journey’’ and all she does is reminisce, dig up old memories and ponder.

If you like your novels made of 95% of description and only 5% or less of dialog, you will possibly adore this. But if you need things to move a little more and you enjoy interactions between characters that happen then and there too much to trade them for description, your time with this book will be long.

Perhaps if I had connected with Ashley or come to appreciate her as a heroine, I would have enjoyed this more. Perhaps.


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