Review: ‘Vanishing Girls’ by Lauren Oliver


New York Times bestselling author Lauren Oliver delivers a gripping story perfect for fans of We Were Liars and I Was Here, about two sisters inexorably altered by a terrible accident.

Dara and Nick used to be inseparable, but that was before the accident that left Dara’s beautiful face scarred and the two sisters totally estranged.

When Dara vanishes on her birthday, Nick thinks Dara is just playing around. But another girl, nine-year-old Madeline Snow, has vanished, too, and Nick becomes increasingly convinced that the two disappearances are linked. Now Nick has to find her sister, before it’s too late.

In this edgy and compelling novel, Lauren Oliver creates a world of intrigue, loss, and suspicion as two sisters search to find themselves, and each other.


Book Details

Genre: Young Adult

Publisher: HarperCollins

ISBN: 9780062224101



This review was previously published on The Bluestocking Review, and the book provided courtesy of Writers Write.

After a tragic accident, once-inseparable sisters Dara and Nick are barely communicating. Dara, left physically scarred, is overwhelmed by anger and feelings of isolation, whilst Nick is shattered by guilt. Their lives are barely functional as it is, but when Dara disappears on her birthday, Nick knows it’s not just one of Dara’s twisted games – she has to find her sister before it’s too late.

Oliver’s style is thrilling and sweet all at once: she flits between lucid descriptions, tense dialogue and unnerving plot twists, building subtle suspense that boils just below the surface of fresh family drama and then explodes at every unexpected climax. It’s quite incredible that all of these aspects are woven together to form a full, striking story from mere fragments of Nick and Dara’s narratives, diary entries, website articles and even photographs.

Vanishing Girls is one of those books I was determined to savor, because right from its offset it proved to be original, dark and enticing. This was a good idea, in theory, considering Oliver’s beautiful prose, but it did not last for long. I tore through the second half, dangerously addicted to the all-too-real characters and the building tension, until finally the last page was turned and I was left emotionally shattered. This is a phenomenal novel.


5 stars

Rating: 5/5

Recommended to: Everyone. Just read it.

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