Publication Date: June 9, 2015
Publisher: Delacorte Press for Young Readers
Genre: YA Contemporary
Page Length: 288 pages
With her genuine gift for comic writing, Sophie Kinsella blends comedy, romance, and psychological insight in this contemporary YA novel sure to inspire and delight.
Audrey loves her family, even if they are a bit off-the-wall. When Audrey develops an anxiety disorder as a result of an unpleasant incident, her family is there to help. Audrey now wears dark glasses whenever she feels the need to protect herself, but she's also making slow but steady progress with Dr. Sarah.
Then Audrey meets Linus, her brother's gaming teammate, and she is energized. She can talk through her fears with Linus in a way she's never been able to do with anyone before. As their friendship deepens and her recovery gains momentum, a sweet romantic connection develops, one that helps not just Audrey but also her entire family.
Finding Audrey is a book I can genuinely say I loved. Take equal parts comedy, a little teenage romance, a main character that can only be described as "uniquely Audrey," a whole lot of cuteness, hilarious family dynamics, and what do you get? This book. Trust me when I say you'll love Audrey, her family, and all their amusing antics! Finding Audrey brings a lighter side to a more serious topic, but still manages to touch upon mental health in an insightful way.
From page one, Sophie Kinsella has you laughing. Readers are immediately introduced to Audrey's fun, a bit off-the-wall family. There's Audrey's Daily Mail-obsessed mom, her "voice of reason" dad, her video game, computer addicted older brother, Frank, and her little baby brother, Felix. Family dynamics took a starring role in this short but sweet read, and getting to know every member and their unique personality was such a privilege. Readers can relate to Audrey and her family in more ways than one as they all persevere on through this crazy thing called life. There are so many aspects to love about Finding Audrey, and for me, the family aspect took one of the top slots.
"Are you sleeping well?" Mum peers at him anxiously. "You teenagers need sleep. You should be sleeping fourteen hours a night."
"Fourteen hours?" We both stare at her.
"Mum, even comatose people don't sleep fourteen hours a night," says Frank.
Audrey is a fourteen-year-old with Social Anxiety Disorder, General Anxiety Disorder, and Depressive Episodes. I personally have not suffered from any of these conditions myself, so I cannot comment on whether or not Sophie Kinsella wrote true to Audrey and her disorders. However, simply from a reader's point of view, I felt Audrey and her condition was written truthfully, honestly well. Sophie Kinsella quite thoroughly describes Audrey and all the thoughts, the emotions, the inner feelings she must live through. Readers get an exclusive, inside look on Audrey as we read, we feel every emotion she suffers through.
"Hi," he tries again. "I'm Linus. You're Audrey, right?"
The threat isn't real. I try to press the words into my mind, but they're drowned out by the panic. It's engulfing. It's like a nuclear cloud.
Besides amazing family dynamics, there is also an adorable relationship that develops between Audrey and her older brother Frank's friend, Linus. Without a doubt, this relationship is one of the cutest I've read so far. Linus is understanding, sweet, and not at all off-putting. He is a friend to Audrey, and along with Audrey's other supporters, helps her along her path to recovery. Get ready to read a plethora of warm, fuzzy, feel-good scenes that will make you smile!
They talk about "body language," as if we all speak it the same. But everyone has their own dialect. For me right now, for example, swiveling my body right away and staring rigidly at the corner means, "I like you." Because I didn't run away and shut myself in the bathroom.
I just hope he realizes that.
Endearing, heart-warming, and downright hilarious, Finding Audrey is a book all will read and love. From the amusing yet realistic family dynamics, to the cute relationship that develops between Audrey and Linus, to Audrey's recovery itself, Sophie Kinsella entwines a story that will hit readers right in the heart. Life isn't simply an upwards journey. It's full of its ups and its downs, and that's okay.
(Oh, and everyone's a little crazy. That's okay, too.) ☺