Title: Last Seen Leaving
Author: Caleb Roehrig
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
Release Date: October 4th 2016
Flynn’s girlfriend has disappeared. How can he uncover her secrets without revealing his own?
Flynn’s girlfriend, January, is missing. The cops are asking questions he can’t answer, and her friends are telling stories that don’t add up. All eyes are on Flynn—as January’s boyfriend, he must know something.
But Flynn has a secret of his own. And as he struggles to uncover the truth about January’s disappearance, he must also face the truth about himself.
– Blurb courtesy of goodreads.com
My Thoughts On…
When Flynn arrives home one day to find a police car sitting in the driveway he’s not sure what to expect, but hearing his girlfriend January has been missing for nearly a week isn’t it. Flynn has no idea where January has gone, and can’t answer the police’s questions as well as they’d like. However after they leave he starts thinking about his and January’s last meeting, the one that ended with an argument and the possible breakdown of their relationship, and starts to wonder whether she’s simply ran away to teach her parents a lesson, or if it’s something more deadly than that.
As Flynn starts looking into January’s disappearance himself, still believing she’s just run away from her mum and step-dad, he starts to discover that maybe he didn’t know January as well as he first thought. Everyone seems to have a different story about her that doesn’t match with what Flynn remembers about his girlfriend; and none of them paint him, January, or their relationship in the best light.
While uncovering the lies January has told Flynn also has to deal with his own secret that he’s kept hidden. However with the police closing in, digging deeper into what really happened to January as well as Flynn’s possible role in it all, Flynn finds his secret getting harder and harder to keep hidden.
I haven’t read too many mystery/thriller books but it’s a genre I really want to read more of. The two books within this genre I have read have both been five star reads so I’m interested in discovering more. From the beginning I was hooked on Last Seen Leaving; there were clues dropped throughout the plot and I was constantly trying to guess what had happened to January, what would happen to her and Flynn. The character development Flynn went through as he faced the truth about himself and January was also wonderful to read.
Flynn was a wonderful character to explore and discover more about. Although his relationship with January ended with a bitter fight he still cares about her. Even before they were dating they were best friends so when she goes missing Flynn needs to find out what happened to her. Flynn makes mistakes, and one of them was potentially not reaching out to January when she started to distance herself from him and her friends, still he throws himself head first into trying to find her when she goes missing.
The secret Flynn keeps is one he has buried so deep he denies it even exists, but it is always there and it’s not something he can just wish away. At his heart Flynn is a good person – loyal and dedicated to the people he loves – but he can also be stubborn and very defensive which causes him trouble more often than not.
January was a large part of this story despite us not seeing much from her character. We see her in Flynn’s flashbacks from their early relationship, and through these flashbacks we see the good in her. However there seems to be two sides to her character. There is the side of January Flynn knows and cares for, his best friend and girlfriend, and then there’s the side he hears about from her new schoolmates, the troubled girl with a standoffish attitude and a neglectful boyfriend.
Last Seen Leaving is a story that makes you suspect everyone. January didn’t have any friends at her new school, or so she told Flynn, and she hated her new step-father and her new home, so each character involved in January’s life is a suspect in her disappearance. Everyone is hiding a secret, not revealing the whole truth, and it makes them all suspicious as you uncover more about the day January disappeared alongside Flynn.
However there are still plenty of good relationships in this book to balance out the bad ones January seemed to have. The memories Flynn has of his relationship with January show the two were dedicated to one another, but also Flynn’s relationship with his parents and his friends were strongly written and relied upon as Flynn digs deeper into January’s disappearance. While the main character development surrounds Flynn and January the side characters were just as well written.
Last Seen Leaving was a story that kept me guessing right until the very end. This book was perfectly paced; every time I thought I had a theory that explained what happened to January, and what would happen to Flynn, the next page completely threw that theory out of the window. After finishing this I need to add more mystery books to my to-read list because I’m hooked on the genre.
What did you think of Last Seen Leaving? Was it a favourite of yours or could you just not get into the story? Let me know.