This is a 2013 release, and I won my copy from Simon and Schuster Canada in a Goodreads contest. This has in no way shaped my opinion. I just really loved this book and felt the need to tell everyone.
From Goodreads: Katie’s world is shattered by the news that her headstrong and bohemian younger sister, Mia, has been found dead at the bottom of a cliff in Bali. The authorities say that Mia jumped—that her death was a suicide.
Although they’d hardly spoken to each other since Mia suddenly left on an around-the-world trip six months earlier, Katie refuses to accept that her sister would have taken her own life. Distraught that they never made peace, Katie leaves her orderly, sheltered life in London behind and embarks on a journey to find out the truth. With only the entries of Mia’s travel journal as her guide, Katie retraces the last few months of her sister’s life, and—page by page, country by country—begins to uncover the mystery surrounding her death. . . .
Weaving together the exotic settings and suspenseful twists of Alex Garland’s The Beach with a powerful tale of familial love in the spirit of Rosamund Lupton’s Sister, Swimming at Night is a fast-paced, accomplished, and gripping debut novel of secrets, loss, and forgiveness.
Loved this book! After the death of their mother, sisters Katie and Mia handle things differently. Katie settles her mothers affairs and continues on with her life, while Mia drops everything and takes off an a trip around the world with her best friend Finn.
The book opens with Katie getting the news that Mia has been found dead in Bali, with authorities claiming all evidence points to suicide. Katie has a difficult time believing her vibrant sister would kill herself. Katie receives Mia's possessions from her trip and finds her travel journal. Deciding she needs to find out what happened to Mia, she sets out to follow the path her sister took using the journal. Along the way, Katie gets to know her sister and finds out some truths about herself. Truths she may not necessarily want to know, and that which may change her perspective on her entire family.
The book is told from alternative perspectives, which I always love, but really seemed to work in this book. I loved getting a glimpse of what both sisters were thinking and feeling. I felt like I was alongside both girls throughout their travels. I could almost smell the eucalyptus trees.
Warning, though, this book will give you serious wanderlust. If you're anything like me, you've already got the travel bug bad. This book will not help the urge to drop everything and take off.
Definitely check this out if you like complex sister relationships, travel, and enough mystery to keep you questioning yourself. I don't have a sister, but Clarke's writing made it clear what a complex relationship sisters have. There really seems to be a fine line between love and hate.
5 out of 5 stars based on Goodreads rating system.
Lucy Clarke's next book is set to be released in Canada in July 2014 from Simon and Schuster, and I can't wait to check it out.