I don't really know what to say about this book. I liked it and didn't like it. All I can say for sure is that it wasn't what I was expecting.
The book is about a baby who gets stolen from a mother. Its told in the perspective of Emmy the mother and a girl, Sophie. Its obvious from the synopsis that Sophie is Emmy's daughter that was stolen. The perspectives are during different time periods as well. Emmy's perspective and story is told during the time a months after the abduction in the 1900's while Sophie's perspective is told in the year 2004, 14 years after the abduction. It gets confusing at times and it take about 2 to 3 chapters to figure out the time difference.
So the story begins with Emmy leaving her baby, who she named "Baby" (yeah ok...anyone else though that was kinda dumb?) outside in their backyard in her tree swing while Emmy went to get a quilt inside the house. I'm guessing the backyard is open with out a fence and right behind it is woods. So anyway the first thing I thought was "Ok how stupid can you be?" Leaving a 4 month old baby ANYWHERE alone is a stupid thing to do. I don't care if you leave the baby in a room in your house (unless it's in its crib) it still should not happen. Its like asking for something bad to happen. My baby would not go anywhere with out me and I certaintly wouldn't leave any child, let alone a baby outside without supervision. So any way Emmy leaves Baby outside and when she comes back suprise suprise, Baby is gone.
Meanwhile, Sophie is a 14 year old girl trapped in a house with her mother. Her "mother" doesn't want Sophie to go outside at all. She homeschool's Sophie and they are constantly moving to different houses. Sophie'e mother says its because they have to run from the "No Goods". Now in this house that they currently live in, a boy lives next door with is 2 aunts, a cat and a dog. Sophie befriends the boy, Joey, and his 2 aunts who come to love her and treat her like family. As the story goes on Sophie and Joey, begin to "date"- its the junior high dating with kisses and such. Its obvious they like each other and are going to end up together but that's not the focus of the book. After Sophie befriends Joey and his aunts, she begins to question how she is living and the strange way her mother acts and forces them to live. So she begins digging for answers.
I thought this book was going to be about Emmy's long search for her daughter and Sophie figuring out she was kidnapped and looking for her mother. That is NOT what happens. Sure Emmy tries to look for Baby in the beginning of the book but bad things happen to her and her story takes a different sort of turn that includes a girl named Autumn who Emmy cares for like a mother. The situation Emmy is put in causes her to not be able to look for Baby but Baby and looking for her is never far from her mind.
I liked most of the characters in the book. I like Sophie and Emmy well enough but the characters I really liked were Joey's aunts, Aunt Helen and Aunt Cloris. They were very sweet ladies who take Sophie in as their own and help her in anyway they can. Aunt Cloris is a skilled baker who feeds Sophie when her "mother" doesn't. They listen to Sophie when she needs to vent and they allow her to cry and get all her feelings out without the standard "everything's going to be fine" routine. I would have liked to have these two as my aunts. Sophie's mother is very controlling and suspicious of everything. While her story and the circumstances surrounding the reason she took Sophie are sad, it's still no excuse for what she did and I found myself disliking her instead of pitying her. Joey is not in the book as much as he could of been but he is instrumental in Sophie's journey, not only as a love interest, but as a friend who she can confide in and who can teacher her how to be a normal teenager.
While I do have mixed feelings about this book, I still suggest giving it a try. Its wasn't amazing but it wasn't bad either.
This review is also posted on Spantalian's Book Reviews