Going Dark

Union Square & Co. Jan. 2023. 336p. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9781454947646.
Gr 9 Up–Josh Reuter and his influencer girlfriend, Amelia Ashley, travel to Rome for vacation, but when only Josh returns home and Amelia’s busy social media goes dark, he is the prime suspect in her disappearance. Matters only become worse when the police find blood in Josh’s suitcase. Hacker Harper Delgado becomes involved, scouring the internet for digital breadcrumbs that might help solve the case. A mix of Gone Girl and true crime, this is a twisty plot that highlights the role race, media, and fame can play in solving a crime. Josh is white, but there are a number of characters of color. Chapters alternate among his perspective, Harper’s, and Amelia’s, while also jumping between past and present; even a ghost makes an appearance. The story is full of detail and nuance; however, the second half loses a bit of momentum as the mystery unravels. Despite this, there are creepy moments that will satisfy internet sleuths and thrill seekers.
VERDICT Overall, this is a clever take that will please fans of the genre and de la Cruz’s books.

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