This book is part of a series featuring Detective D.D. Warren. It can be pre-ordered now and will be available at all booksellers on February 6, 2018.
If I could rate a book higher than a 5, then this would be at least a 10! Lisa Gardner’s latest book in her D.D. Warren series is not just a mystery/thriller. It is also a social commentary on so many issues. Roxie Baez has a dysfunctional family, and the whole book is centered around her and her life. When her family is found murdered, at least everyone except her, she is the number one suspect. LOOK FOR ME becomes a cat and mouse game between Detective D.D. Warren, with quirky survivor Flora Dane thrown in as a confidential informant. The social commentary is fascinating and worked into the story so well that you want to keep reading to find out what happens to Roxie and the many ways the system has failed her. First her mom failed her, then the judicial and foster system failed her, and even her school was not a place of safety for her. So, where does a young girl find help when she is desperate. Enter another character who seems to be on the autism spectrum, but Mike Davis is her only friend in foster care, the one who warns her and tries to watch out for her. The author does an outstanding job of presenting the case against bullying by having two of the main characters, Roberto and Anya be so evil to Roxie from the time she first enters the foster care system. I was enthralled by the mystery as much as by the social commentary. The whole book has an “if only” kind of aura about it. But in the book, as in life, there are no “if only’s”. There is only the reality that is heart-breaking and eye-opening at the same time. Read the book for the mystery; remember the book for the lessons you can take away from it.
This is without doubt the best D.D. Warren book that I have ever read and I have read all of them. The story itself will draw you into the abyss that is Roxy’s life. The characters are heroic and sympathetic. I enjoyed the plot, but I was really attracted to the social commentary about the foster care system and how when it fails children, there can be vast repercussions. I cheered, I cried, and I stayed up late at night to finish this book because I wanted to know the end of Roxy’s sad tale. The reality is that this book presents a world in which sometimes the bad guys win, and there is no “Cinderella” ending. My favorite character was the quirky and intriguing Flora Dane. Flora, who survived her own attack and over a year of captivity, now runs a site online to help survivors learn how to cope in the world after surviving the unthinkable. Flora is the narrator for part of the story, telling her part of the story in first person; the parts with Detective Warren featured are in third person. Roxy has a story, too, so there is a story within the story, telling what a perfect family should be. This book was a fascinating look at society, including those who cannot speak for themselves, young children and pets. Yes, there are pets included, too. A review would not be complete without mentioning Rosie and Blaze, Roxy’s pets, who in many ways are her salvation. Buy the book to be entertained. Read the book to enter a world that is unthinkably cruel.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”