17 & Gone by Nova Ren Suma Review: A psychological thriller about missing girls

January 2, 2014 by Jeann @ Happy Indulgence | 4 stars, Books, Reviews

17 & Gone by Nova Ren Suma Review: A psychological thriller about missing girls17 & Gone by Nova Ren Suma
Published by Hardie Grant Egmont on July, 2013
Source: Publisher
Genres: Thriller, Young Adult
Amazon | Book Depository
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Seventeen-year-old Lauren is having visions of girls who have gone missing. And all these girls have just one thing in common – they are 17 and gone without a trace. As Lauren struggles to shake these waking nightmares, impossible questions demand urgent answers: Why are the girls speaking to Lauren? How can she help them? And… is she next?

As Lauren searches for clues, everything begins to unravel. Then a brush with death lands her in the hospital and a shocking truth emerges, changing everything.

With complexity and richness, Nova Ren Suma serves up a beautiful, visual, fresh interpretation of what it means to be lost.

Seventeen and Gone is a chilling tale about girls that go missing when they’re 17, told through Nova Ren Suma’s poetic, evocative prose.

It’s a story of one girls devotion to finding out what has happened to Abby, a girl found on a missing poster. It’s also the story of how that girl can lose herself in the process in this psychological thriller.

Within its pages, we find out about Lauren’s commitment to finding out what happened to these missing girls, and she is the only one who has courage to wear on and look for what happened even when their families and authorities have given up. Her perspective blurs the lines of reality, one day she’d be in school and the next she’ll seeing spirits of the lost girls and they will be making her do things.

The writing is poetic, chilling and beautiful, and captures the heart of the novel perfectly. Through Nova Ren Suma’s writing, we experience the strange and confusing hallucinations and feelings that the main character has as she slowly loses grip on her sanity.

I found Seventeen and Gone to be a thrilling adventure, with its overarching mystery to what happened to Abby and the things that were happening to Lauren in the process. I read the whole novel in one day, because I was glued to this strange and haunting tale.

Seventeen and Gone explores some very real issues, including not giving up on missing persons (in particular, girls when they turn 17) and the mentally unstable. It’s certainly not a fluffy read, but one that helps us understand some darker issues of life and may encourage others to reach out for help.

I received a review copy of Seventeen and Gone from the publisher via Readplus in exchange for an honest review.

Rating: 4 out of 5

Reminder: This is a scheduled post. I am currently on hiatus and will be replying to comments upon my return on January 12.


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Jeann is an Aussie YA blogger and mum who loves to read and recommend books! You can usually find me fangirling about books on my various social media channels including Twitter @happyindulgence, Instagram and Youtube.

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24 responses to “17 & Gone by Nova Ren Suma Review: A psychological thriller about missing girls

  1. shansbookshelf

    love this review 🙂 My name is Shannon and I've recently started my book blog on reviews:) I was just wondering if you could help me. I really love how you have a box around the syynopsis and connected to the cover and I would be really grateful if you could tell me how to do that. It's been driving me crazy trying to look it up and see how to do it:D

  2. Yes it kind of did have The Lovely Bones feel with the creepiness to it, but I liked this a lot more than that book because there was some sort of a resolution. Glad to hear you'll be reading it!

  3. I've never heard of Nova Ren but this one seems really good. That premise gives me the chill and it's like there's a witchhunt for 17 year old girls. Or it seems like there's a psycho running around the place who has an obsession to kill them. That really is disturbing… you know young girls living in fear because their lives have an expiration date after they reach the said age.

    I hope that the cops in this town are proving to be reliable enforcers of the law. 😀
    Charlotte @ Thoughts recently posted…Book Review: The Forbidden StoneMy Profile

  4. I am so, so happy you loved this. Nova Ren Suma writes incredible prose, doesn't she? I love your description of her beautiful writing. I think a lot of readers have trouble with her books because they're more psychological thrillers than action-packed, plot-driven stories, but that's exactly why I like her.

    Nice job on avoiding spoilers in your review, too. It's hard not to talk about, but having read the book I know exactly what you're referring to.

    Wendy @ The Midnight Garden
    Wendy Darling recently posted…Starters series & Social Club series: giveawayMy Profile

    • Thanks Wendy, I thought her writing definitely stands out. I like the subtleties of psychological thrillers (in fact I LOVE them because everyone can write a romance but not everyone can write a psychological thriller). Thanks for visiting!

  5. I read this too! I agree, it's certainly haunting and I never expected that ending. I was bothered by this story so I'll probably pick up this author when I feel like being dark. Not for the beach 😉

  6. I haven't come across a single thing yet by Nova Ren Suma that sounds light hearted… but I've heard so many nice things about her writing I think I'll have to brave one of her books one day. 🙂 Lovely review honey. Thanks for sharing you thoughts!

  7. This kind of story, for some reason, fascinates me. Like "The Lovely Bones", and even the movie Prisoners. I always find myself trying to solve the mystery of what made the missing disappear, if they were taken by a serial killer, or just simply left. I'm going to read this book, thanks for reviewing it, Jeann!
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