Title: Before They Find Us
Author: Michelle. A. Hansen
On the Shelves: Young Adult> Suspense/Mystery
“I’m going to make you wish you were dead.
Just a text. Seventeen-year-old Rebecca Hales tries not to worry. Probably a wrong number. Not really meant for her, and definitely not related to the crime she witnessed six years ago. Right?
Then two states away, a bomb goes off in her best friend’s locker. Soon Ryan is labeled a terrorist and runs to the safest place he knows—Rebecca’s house in small-town Wyoming. It doesn’t take long for the FBI to show up asking questions. Rebecca lies, of course, and says she hasn’t seen him.
Now she’s neck-deep in it with him, whatever “it” is. The only way out is to return to Vegas, where Ryan is a wanted man. The city of lies and illusion tests Rebecca’s wits as she struggles to find the person who framed Ryan and why.
Is Rebecca’s text linked to the bombing? And what does it have to do with a six year old murder? Rebecca needs to find out before she loses Ryan—and her own life”
I first need to thank the author, and the publishers at Priests Rapids Press, for allowing me access via Netgalley to this book early, in exchange for a review.
I went into this book after reading Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn, which seemed perfect because it put me in the mood for suspense/thriller novel. Unfortunately, Before They Find Us left me with a bad aftertaste at what was a poor attempt as a suspense novel. Maybe I had my expectations far too high, but this book was missing something for me, and it just fell flat a lot of the time. The book itself has an interesting premise, hence why I requested it, but the characters annoyed me a lot.
The main character Rebecca is pretty much a Mary-Sue who has skills one way or another that will come in handy but don’t make much sense. There is an insane amount of slut shaming in this book. There is also a scene where she asks one character if he is gay because, of course in this book, she gets multiple fashion “makeovers~” and he is co-ordinating the outfits, as a result of her asking this horrible question, he forces himself on her as if to prove he isn’t homosexual- what the actual hell did I just read??
Characters constantly make reference to how pretty or amazing Rebecca is even though she has a low opinion of herself. Despite her being on the run for her life with her friend, her biggest priority and worry isn’t finding shelter or food or being arrested…no, it’s her bad DIY dye job on her hair.
Honestly, I am amazed I even finished this book. A lot of people snub Young Adult books, saying that are never as “good” as Adult books- this, I feel, is one of those which would be brought up in this debate, and not in a good way.