Publication: September 4th 2018
Publisher: Wednesday Books
Pages: 311 pages
Genre: Fiction, Mystery, Young Adult, Contemporary
My Rating: ⛤⛤⛤⛤⛤
CW: Pedophilia, Rape, Child Abuse, Drug Abuse, Murder
My God this book was amazing.
Thirteen-year-old Mattie Southern is dead and now her sister nineteen-year-old Sadie is missing. Podcast host West McCray doesn’t find these facts interesting. Sad, but these things happen, “girls go missing all the time.” But when West gets a call from someone begging him to find Sadie, his boss sees a story and sends West on a hunt to find Sadie. While West is researching where Sadie went, Sadie is out for revenge on the man who murdered her sister, and she will stop at nothing until he’s dead.
Sadie is easily one of the best books I started (but sadly didn’t finish) in 2018. It’s complicated and so perfectly put together, much more than a lot of stories with alternating narratives I’ve read. Sadie’s narrative is persistent, dedicated, and angry. Her anger bleeds off the page, it’s contagious, and it’s necessary. I love that Summers isn’t afraid to write about angry girls, to show the degree of anger in their bones. And West’s narrative was just as interesting, a scope of Sadie’s story from those around her who did and didn’t know her. His narrative perfectly shows the detachment that comes with true crime and our obsession with it, with the gory details and mystery instead of the victims and those involved. How we turn so many horrible things into a spectacle.
This book is dark and it is so hard and so uncomfortable to read and that’s why I love it. I love books that make readers look at the dark and ugly things in the world we don’t want to look at, forcing us to acknowledge that there are bad things in the world. There are bad and disgusting things and they are happening every day and we ignore them. But Summers forces readers to look at this ugliness, to remember that it happens, is happening. That it affects strangers around us, friends, and family. That there is darkness that poisons so many lives and that we need to look it straight in it’s ugly face. We need to do something.
Sadie is an unforgettable and tough novel that is necessary. It’s dark, angry, and asks readers to look at the stories we consume. Summers outdoes herself in her latest work and I can’t wait to read more from her.