Follow Me Down by Tanya Byrne
YA, Mystery, Thriller
Paperback, 368 pages
Published October 10th, 2013 by Headline
Adamma Okomma is a 16-year-old girl who has spent her childhood moving from continent to continent. That’s what comes with her father’s job as a Nigerian diplomat. Now Adamma and her family are moving from New York City to Wiltshire, England. Adamma is less than thrilled, especially since she will be shipped off to boarding school in the countryside.
However, when she meets Scarlett, things are looking up. Scarlett is a beautiful, impulsive, and fiery girl with a flair for the dramatic. However, she and Adamma become fast friends and are soon inseparable. However, their relationship turns volatile when they fall for the same guy. Neither one is willing to budge.
Things take a turn for the worse when Scarlett goes missing. At first it just seems like Scarlett being Scarlett—she’s been known to run off before. But, there is something different about this time. Is there something more dark and sinister going on? Scarlett has always had her secrets, but this one will change everything.
I must say that I loved this book. It was a thrilling and well-written read. It was a great blend of teenage coming of age/romance and mystery. I am glad that I didn’t take a long time to read this book. I read it within 24 hours (it was my day off) and I’m very glad I did. This way there wasn’t a lot of time for me to reflect on what I was reading—I was just engulfed by it, living the story out along side Adamma and Scarlett. This way, the mystery felt more intense and real. Given too much time, I would have thought it out, analyzed the plot, tried to figure out the whodunnit etc. I probably would have figured it out, and that would have made the ending less enjoyable. I just finished it and was floored by the ending, literally exclaiming, “what, what, WHAT?” and I think that’s how Byrne intended it. So, if you read this book (and you should), don’t prolong the process. Just let yourself get swept up in it.
The writing and the structure of the book were quite well done. The vivid description and the realistic characters really brought the story to life. I really enjoyed the structure, even though I don’t usually enjoy split perspectives. In Follow Me Down, the story has two different time lines: “Before” and “After,” both from the eyes of Adamma. This makes the mystery unfold in a unique and thrilling way, shedding light on different aspects of Adamma’s and Scarlett’s friendship, and Adamma’s new relationship.
Two thumbs up from me! Definitely put this book on your to-read list! It’s a must! Do it! now!
Beth is the founder and editor of Fuelled by Fiction. She is a twenty-something east coast Canadian girl who loves writing about books and feminism.