My review of the audiobook of Reconstruction Amelia was originally written for Shelf Awareness but was unable to run. However, it's definitely able to appear here. Hope you enjoy!
First line: "Because there are 176 definitions for the word loser on urbandictionary.com."
Kate Baron is in the middle of a high-powered meeting for her law firm when she receives a call that her daughter Amelia has been suspended from her private prep school for cheating. Kate needs to come and pick up Amelia immediately.
Certainly there must be a mistake as Amelia is a perfect student; she’d never cheat. But when Kate arrives at the school, she never has a chance to ask. Amelia is dead and the police believe she jumped from the school’s roof, committing suicide. Kate almost comes to terms with the suicide when she receives an anonymous text message, “Amelia didn’t jump.”
In her debut novel, Kimberly McCreight aims high by exploring the volatility of teenage relationships. As the book’s narrator, Khristine Hvam is tasked with expressing every emotion of the young female spectrum. From the cocky, self-assured, and extremely overindulged Zadie to the book’s title character, smart, athletic, play-by-rules Amelia, Hvam keys into the teen psyche as though she’s still in high school herself.
Interspersed between the chapters from Amelia’s perspective, McCreight offers the perspective of Kate. Changing gears, Hvam climbs into the role of desperate, grieving mother, allowing listeners to intimately experience every parent’s worst nightmare.
Hvam never loses sight of the intensity of the plot. Carefully balancing the roles of mother and daughter, Hvam convinces her audience that smart girls can make stupid choices, while she jolts listeners with the horrors teens are capable of inflicting on one another.
Heart-breakingly disturbing, this audiobook’s haunting narration will echo long past “the end.”
Reconstructing Amelia is available as an unabridged audio from Harper Audio (ISBN: 9780062237590) and in hardcover (ISBN: 9780062225436) from Harper.