Book Review of Young Adult Novel, Vanishing Girls by Lauren Oliver

Book Review: Vanishing Girls by Lauren Oliver

Vanishing Girls, by Lauren Oliver (an author I adore), has haunted me ever since I finished it. Told from multiple points of view, Vanishing Girls is the story of two teenage sisters, Dara and Nick, who are struggling to heal themselves and their relationship after a car accident critically injures Dara.

While the two sisters were previously inseparable, when Nick returns home a year after the accident, she discovers Dara is no longer speaking to her. In addition, her mother is an emotional, over-protective mess, and both sisters are still struggling with the divorce of their parents. Meanwhile, a young girl goes missing nearby and the family becomes enthralled with the case.

To avoid giving away any major plot details, I’ll end the summary and instead tell you why I think you should read Vanishing Girls. 

Reasons To Read:

  1.  Unreliable narrator. Nick suffers from memory loss as a result of the car accident and struggles to remember the day of the crash. I don’t know about you, but I love a story-teller I can’t quite trust.
  2. It’s chilling, thrilling, and dark. There are portions of the story so suspenseful I actually found myself speed-reading to finish.
  3. Pictures! Not enough to be a graphic novel by any means, just a few black-and-white’s sprinkled throughout the book depicting the sister’s flashbacks. It’s a nice touch.
  4. Summertime setting. Relive your teen summer jobs, like Nick’s at the local amusement park, as well as your teenage summer romances.
  5. Superbly written. Oliver can sure craft a mean phrase.
  6. There’s a boy.
  7. It’s a heartfelt sister-story. Vanishing Girls captures the dynamics of a sister relationship. I don’t have any sisters, just an older brother, so a peak into the relationship of sisters is incredibly interesting to me.

It reminded me of another piece that gave me a peek into another sibling experience I’ll never have: being a twin. Made by Emma Hanewinckel (twin to Sara Hanewinckel), this clip will give you glimpse of twin life just as Vanishing Girls gives a glimpse of sister life.

Let me know if you end up reading the novel and you agree or disagree with my thoughts! Also, feel free to shower Emma with phrase about the video she made in the comments.


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