Published by: Delacorte BYR on June 9, 2015
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult
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From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Shopaholic series comes a terrific blend of comedy, romance, and psychological recovery in a contemporary YA novel sure to inspire and entertain.
An anxiety disorder disrupts fourteen-year-old Audrey’s daily life. She has been making slow but steady progress with Dr. Sarah, but when Audrey meets Linus, her brother’s gaming teammate, she is energized. She connects with him. Audrey 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.
I received this book for free from Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
One Line: A story of a quirky family that charmed me in many ways.
In My Opinion: Add to cart!
I’ve been a fan of Kinsella’s ever since her Shopaholic series so many years ago so of course I jumped at the chance to read her ventures into the YA genre. I think, for the most part, I enjoyed Finding Audrey. Audrey’s family is made up of very quirky characters, especially her mother, and it was interesting watching them all interact. I was disappointed that we never learn what exactly happened to Audrey that pushed her over the edge, causing her and some fellow students to be dismissed from school, but the book is more so about Audrey and her family dealing with the aftermath.
Audrey suffers from anxiety disorder with depressive episodes and it’s pretty serious. She can’t stand to look at people, she wears sunglasses all the time, and any sudden or loud noises freaks her out. Kinsella’s interpretation of it was interesting and I liked that she used the term “lizard brain” so people could get simpler grasp of it. I’m no Psych specialist, but I’ve dealt with my fair share of patients with mental illnesses, so I could understand. I admired Audrey’s progression throughout the book and her willingness to try new things in an attempt to get better. I loved her doctor’s idea of recording everything and I loved how Linus challenged her. It was funny seeing her interpretation of life with her family through the lens and she managed to capture some pretty candid moments that caused a lot of laughs on my part.
Now about Audrey’s family. Her mother drove me crazy! She was obsessive and a bit manic at times, and if I was her child, I’d be pissed. Yes, I knew where she was coming from and empathized with her, but she was a bit too much most of the time. As a parent, you want to protect your children and you want to know that you’re raising them correctly, so when one of them has a life-altering event that you have no control over, you focus on what you can control. I’m a control-freak, I know. I get it. But the way Audrey’s mom dealt with Frank and his addiction to video games, although it was extremely funny at times, was intense and ridiculous. The woman needed to take a chill pill. I felt bad for her dad who just had to go along with her. I liked Frank and his relationship with Audrey. I appreciated the fact that her family didn’t seem to treat Audrey any differently and Frank acted like a brother should. Felix was adorable, too, and I loved his little scenes.
Kinsella definitely took the humorous approach to this subject and after having time to absorb it, I really liked it the book overall. Like I said, it’s filled with quirky characters that, even though they’re pretty crazy at times, are also charming. I loved getting to know Audrey and following along on her journey and Kinsella’s writing continues to be as entertaining as ever. I’m definitely looking forward to more books from Kinsella.