The Forgotten Girl by David Bell

The Forgotten Girl - David Bell

The Forgotten Girl depicts a familiar theme in the American experience; that of a high school mishap that turns deadly. Years go by, personal memories morph into an experience of regret and guilt, and a vow of silence promises to keep the secret buried in the woods. Teenage friends mature into adulthood, and what was once a tightly bound secret unravels into a conflict of social class, misdeeds of young hearts, and teenage alliances gone wrong.


This story strikes familiarity in the hearts of all who endured, and survived, the troubled teens. Yet the familiar departs beyond class differences, jealousy, friendships, and broken hearts. Death results not from one bad decision but many ill-fated turns of events. As times change, so do the characters; interesting and distinctive, yet not in the most vivid depth or detail. Characters were set against a recognizable backdrop of small town America; one which pulls the reader in easily, then unfolds with heart-wrenching plot twists, a single 'accidental' murder that sends shock-waves of guilt and blame through many generations; ultimately more lives are pulled into the vortex of ruin. Not surprisingly, this tale reveals that deceptions invade along multiple generational and social boundaries. As the plotline progresses, the truth is exposed gradually, plot twists are plentiful, and the final reveal at the end does not disappoint.


I would recommend this book to anyone seeking a murder mystery. It is adventurous and does a  fantastic job in capturing one's attention from chapter 1 to finale. Character development is somewhat simplified and yet aptly captivating to carry the plot. Teenage readers will identify with their age-like characters, as adults will likely engage a recall of teen tragedy befallen to someone in their past. Overall The Forgotten Girl is an engaging mystery that won't disappoint. It is a captivating read, carrying many good elements of a great mystery, while realistically melding the intrigue of a fictional journey with teenage nostalgia: something most readers will easily identify with.


I received a free copy of this novel in exchange for the review.