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Going Dark by Melissa de la Cruz

Wednesday, March 8, 2023

“An intense rollercoaster of a thriller and a searing indictment of which victims get our attention and sympathy.”
– # 1 New York Times bestselling author Marie Lu

In this ripped-from-the-headlines Gone Girl meets A Good Girl's Guide to Murder , #1 New York Times bestselling author Melissa de la Cruz weaves a white-knuckle YA thriller about a beautiful young influencer who vanishes after going on vacation with her boyfriend.


The Influencer
Amelia Ashley shares everything with her followers – her favorite hole-in-the-wall restaurants, her best fashion tips, and her European trip-of-a-lifetime with her hot boyfriend.

The Boyfriend
Josh has no choice but to return home without Amelia after she abandons him in Rome. He has no clue where she went or how her blood got in his suitcase. Why won’t anyone believe him?

The Hacker
To Harper Delgado, Amelia Ashley is just another missing white girl whipping up a media frenzy. But with each digital knot she untangles about the influencer, Harper who is Amelia Ashley?

The Other Girl
Two years ago, another girl went missing, one who never made headlines or had a trending hashtag.

The Truth
Amelia’s disappearance has captured the world’s attention. What comes next? Watch this space…

Told through a mixture of social media posts, diary entries, and firsthand accounts,  Going Dark  is a gripping, suspenseful thriller about all the missing girls who fall off the radar, perfect for true crime fans and readers of  One of Us is Lying  by Karen M. McManus.

Goodreads Summary

The sheer creativity of the book's compilation of media utilized to tell the story was enjoyable and different. In a weird way, the book reminded me of the missing flight in the past years: there was lots of speculation from online sources, people coming up with theories, and someone close to the missing girl as the main suspect. Amelia felt more like a faraway social media figure, which I suppose made sense given her status as an influencer, than a real character. 

Even after reading the book I don't feel like I really know her well. Amelia led a secretive life and a life that could lead her into danger; when the police identified her boyfriend as a person of interest I was once again reminded of another recent event in the news regarding a woman murdered by her boyfriend. As the book wore on, I wasn't entirely convinced that the boyfriend, in this case, had anything to do with the events leading up to Amelia's disappearance. I think the author kept the disappearance just vague enough to allow for many different guesses. 

Strangely, one of my favorite parts of the book revolved around the environment. I loved reading about Rome and unique history wrapped around the city. It was fun to see Rome through someone else's eyes. I would have enjoyed it if more of the book had focused on the city and its restaurants, culture, and historical landmarks. 

4 Stars

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