Author: Rebecca Podos
Publisher: Balzer & Bray
Published Date: January 26th 2016
Genre: Realistic Fiction, Mystery, Contemporary, YA
Page Count: 304
My Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★
All Imogene Scott knows of her mother is the bedtime story her father told her as a child. It’s the story of how her parents met: he, a forensic pathologist, she, a mysterious woman who came to identify a body. A woman who left Imogene and her father when Imogene was a baby, a woman who was always possessed by a powerful loneliness, a woman who many referred to as “troubled waters.”
Now Imogene is seventeen, and her father, a famous author of medical mysteries, has struck out in the middle of the night and hasn’t come back. Neither Imogene’s stepmother nor the police know where he could’ve gone, but Imogene is convinced he’s looking for her mother. And she decides it’s up to her to put to use the skills she’s gleaned from a lifetime of reading her father’s books to track down a woman she’s only known in stories in order to find him and, perhaps, the answer to the question she’s carried with her for her entire life.
"Like, you keep saying it's your job to find your dad. But I don't get it. You're not a detective. You're not a superhero. I don't remember you becoming, like, 'one with the night.' It is literally the police's literal job to find him. So shouldn't we tell the cops what we know?"
Imogene has essentially been taking care of herself and at times her father since her mom left them. When she left Imogene's father started having bad periods of time and Imogene would deal with them as best as she could, and eventually her dad decided they would see a counselor and try to make things better. Which is when he gets on medicine and starts not having bad times as much as long as he takes his medicine and then he ends up marrying the therapist (Lindi) who helps manage everything and ends up becoming the driving force of the household.
When Imogene’s father disappears in the middle of the night leaving her with a memento from her grandma on her mom’s side, Imogene believes that he has gone to find her to try and see why exactly she left. Imogene immediately tries to start finding clues and where exactly he went to all while trying to keep her stepmother Lindi at a distance, so she won’t try to stop her. With the help of her best friend Jessa, Imogene is able to get information on her mom and where she has been the past few years. But she wasn’t expecting to find out certain things about her mom.
Even though she finds that information out she still hasn’t found her dad and she is running out of potential options of where he could be.
I ended up liking this book far more than I was expecting to, even though Imogene keeps her stepmom at a distance you can tell she does like her. Plus Lindi is very caring towards Imogene and at times seems more interested in making sure that she was okay then finding her husband.
I really enjoyed Imogene and Jessa’s friendship. While I do think Imogene doesn’t give Jessa enough credit and just considers her to be materialistic you can tell that by the end of the book that they’ve grown as friends and Imogene doesn’t see her in that way anymore. As for Jessa I found that she was far smarter and knew more about different things in the world than Imogene did. Together they were able to put the pieces together that Imogene’s father and the police couldn’t /weren’t able to.
There is slut-shaming, you can tell that this opinion was dropped by the end and was resolved for the most part.
This was my first book with mental health being a prominent part and I surprisingly really enjoyed it, and I will be looking forward to future books by Rebecca Podos.