"I wasn't nearly, I was enough..."
Nearly Boswell lives with her mother in a trailer park. Her dad abandoned them years ago, so mom has to dance at the local strip club to make rent. Thankfully, Nearly is super smart. She is competing to be the top student in her physics class so she can earn a huge scholarship and get out of the trailer park. He only competition is her best friend Anh.
Years ago, Nearly read an ad in the classifieds that she is certain was from her father. Now, she steals from her mom's tip money to buy newspapers in hopes that he will contact her again. She spots an ad that sounds like it's meant for her, telling her to look under the bleachers at school. The cheerleader that she tutors is found, naked and unconscious, under the bleachers. A second ad follows. By the time Nearly figures it out, she is too late to save another student she tutors.
It's at about this point that Nearly goes to the police. She shows them the ads, but they are dismissive of her claims. After a third ad and the murder of another student she tutored, they start to see the connection. Unfortunately, they decide that the connection means that Nearly is the murderer. To keep tabs on her, they enlist the help of bad boy turned informant Reece. They have one of those prickly relationships where they hate each other until they inevitably fall in love.
Nearly Gone is an intriguing mystery. I didn't even figure out who did it until really close to the end. I almost forgot the whole semi-paranormal touching thing that Nearly does where she can read people's emotions, but it really doesn't matter to the plot anyways. I liked Nearly, she was smart and had a tough attitude and drive. Reese was okay, but not good enough for my collection of YA boyfriends. The story gets a little gory at times, but I enjoyed that aspect. It is nice to have another book for the fairly rare YA mystery genre.
I received my copy of Nearly Gone from Edelweiss, courtesy of Kathy Dawson Books. It's available for purchase now.