Title: The Lost Girl
Author: Sangu Mandanna
Reviewed by: Cassie
The Fairies Say:
Summary (from Goodreads.com)
Eva's life is not her own. She is a creation, an abomination-an echo. Made by the Weavers as a copy of someone else, she is expected to replace a girl named Amarra, her "other", if she ever died. Eva studies what Amarra does, what she eats, what it's like to kiss her boyfriend, Ray. So when Amarra is killed in a car crash, Eva should be ready.
But fifteen years of studying never prepared her for this.
Now she must abandon everything she's ever known-the guardians who raised her, the boy she's forbidden to love-to move to India and convince the world that Amarra is still alive.
What Eva finds is a grief-stricken family; parents unsure how to handle this echo they thought they wanted; and Ray, who knew every detail, every contour of Amarra. And when Eva is unexpectedly dealt a fatal blow that will change her existence forever, she is forced to choose: Stay and live out her years as a copy or leave and risk it all for the freedom to be an original. To be Eva.
From debut novelist Sangu Mandanna comes the dazzling story of a girl who was always told what had to be-until she found the strength to decide for herself.
The Lost Girl kind of blew my mind. Kind of. Not totally but kind of. It starts out before. She's in her cottage in England, learning what her other (Amarra) learns and feels. Her guardians keep her company and watch her, and we get a feel for how Eva grew up. The relationships. Some may say this was slow, but I didn't expect this to be a fast book. I was not unhappy at all going in.
As we continue, we get to learn Eva as a person. She's got a temper, she's impatient, passionate, and naive. She loves fiercely. She doesn't want to replace Amarra as much as Amarra doesn't want Eva to replace herself. Now, I wholly respected and even admired Eva at parts. It's just, once or twice, I felt as if she was all talk and no walk. You know? But I dunno, I'm really picky about that and bet it was just my uber-paranoid self nitpicking. I was expecting her to bust out some Jason Bourne moves, but (against popular ways) Sangu Mandanna decided that, well... That's unrealistic for a 17-year-old girl who hasn't been taught espionage. So I respect that.
The other characters really add to the story. You may hate Amarra because of how she treats Eva, and you may claim she is a selfish girl, but honestly. If you had an identical twin (that the world regarded as a monster) that you had to share everything with and someday might forfeit your life up for her when you died, wouldn't you be bitter? Well, what I'm trying to say is this: the characters are very well-developed.
Honestly, the ending was what got me. The very last part was just so powerful and beautiful. I could totally see it, very easily saw it play out. It was dazzling and sad and hopeful and blunt.
What would you do for a chance at freedom?
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