My name is Alex. I am fifteen years old, and I don’t know where my sister is. Or if she will ever come back.
On New Year’s Eve 5,000 blackbirds dropped dead. The same day Olivia McCarthy went missing from a small coastal village in Orkney.
Now Her younger sister Alex is on a mission to find out just what happened to Olivia. But does she really want to know all the answers?
This was an uncorrected proof I picked up for free at YALC, and I’d heard nothing about it previously. I was intrigued by the blurb (and the gorgeous cover, I am a book magpie! 😂) but was too sure what to expect as the blurb is pretty short. < span class=”readable reviewText”>And it turns out that is basically my main criticism of the book. I really enjoyed this book, from the concept, to the way it Gomes handled the characters’ loss, to the way it had been written overall. My complaint is the cover and the blurb on the back mentioning the blackbirds falling from the sky. While the blurb also talks about the actual plot and mentions it as a suspense book, it does somewhat imply the plot is linked to the blackbirds. Which? It is not 😦 I would have liked to have seen that! All you get is the main character watching the news report and a couple of brief follow up mentions. Personally, I’d take it off the cover and blurb, the mystery is more than strong enough to stand on its own. < span class=”readable reviewText”>However the rest of the book is pretty damn good! I really felt the uncertainty, the confusion, the denial and the anger along with Alex, and her driving need to know what happened. I understood her not talking to her friends (ugh don’t get me started on them lol! I get their response but they are rubbish friends) and her feeling like no one was telling her anything. The loss is really well portrayed. I especially liked that they all forgot her birthday except the detective, too. < span class=”readable reviewText”>I also got a good feel of life in a small isolated community through the story as well. I think that plays an important part in the story and it was nice to see it come across. < span class=”readable reviewText”>I didn’t figure it out, though had a moment of thinking it was possible when the killer drove her home (trying to keep it a bit vague there!)< span class=”readable reviewText”>My only other mild niggle is the audience – I feel this reads as well for adults as it does for YA, it’s only real link is Alex’s age, and there is nothing too YA about the plot overall – it sort of reads like any other mystery novel I’ve read. Not necessarily a bad thing though!<<<<<<