Tuesday 3 June 2014

Book Review: Far From You by Tess Sharpe

Name: Far From You
Author: Tess Sharpe
Publisher US &UK: Disney Hyperion/ Orion Indigo
Summary: 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.

Review: Far From You is the first novel from debut author Tess Sharpe from US publisher Disney Hyperion and UK publisher Orion Indigo. This book had me rapidly flipping the pages to find out what happened next. It is the story of teen Sophie Winters whose life changed in an instant. That moment is when her best friend Mina is murdered. At seventeen she has endured a lot. At fourteen she narrowly survived a car accident, but she escaped with an addiction to Oxy that controlled her life and took her a couple years to defeat.  It’s because of this addiction and because of her past that nobody wants to believe what Sophie is trying to tell them: she was clean and has been clean for months. She was not using and she did not drag Mina along for a drug deal. Mina’s death is not her fault. She cared too much for Mina to ever drag her into that part of her life.

The way that Far From You is written is one chapter is written in present-day and the following chapter is a flashback, though these are at various times throughout the last few years. At first I wasn’t sure that I would like this format—but Tess Sharpe knew what she was doing, it worked perfectly for the type of novel that she was writing. Without being told what’s happening, you are given the chance to actually see what happened. You get to live in current day with Sophie as she tries to discover what has happened, but also see the past unfolding.
It’s a combination of contemporary and mystery/thriller. The balance was absolutely perfect. I can’t lie—I am a total contemporary junkie! But the added mystery behind what happened the night that Mina was murdered heightened the impact as well as my interest. I couldn’t wait to put the pieces together and figure out the puzzle of what happened in Sophie’s past along with Sophie who was trying to figure out what happened the night that Mina was murdered.  I thought this would inevitably lead to what happened on the night that Mina was killed and Sophie survived and I was right. The plot twists were unexpected and this has easily become one of my favorite reads of 2014.


Suus said...

This sounds like a really good read! I also love the cover! Great review!

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