I'm Not Missing
by Fountain, Carrie

A debut novel by an award-winning poet is set in a New Mexico desert city and follows the experiences of a motherless half-Latina girl who steps out of the larger-than-life shadow of her best friend and lands in an unexpected relationship. Simultaneous eBook.

Carrie Fountain's poems have appeared in Tin House, Poetry, and The New Yorker, among others. Her debut collection, Burn Lake, was a National Poetry Series winner and was published in 2010 by Penguin. Her second collection, Instant Winner, was published by Penguin in 2014. I'm Not Missing is her debut novel. Born and raised in Mesilla, New Mexico, Carrie received her MFA as a fellow at the James A. Michener Center for Writers at the University of Texas at Austin. Currently writer-in-residence at St. Edward's University, she lives in Austin with her husband and their two children.

In the process of searching for important people who have disappeared from her life, Miranda finds herself. Ever since her Latina mother left to join a religious cult, biracial Miranda has been raised by her caring white dad who works for NASA in New Mexico. Coincidentally, her best friend, Sydney, had an alcoholic mother who also abandoned the family. Even though Syd hasn't had it as easy as Mir, she's always been supportive of her, especially after the "Nick Allison Event," when Mir's date bailed on prom night. But then Syd vanishes too, leaving only a note: "I'm gone. I'm not missing." As Mir starts to piece together clues about Syd in this debut novel, the light thriller turns to romance à la John Green, with impeccable realism and spot-on dialogue. Mir also learns the truth about her longtime crush, Nick, and what really happened on prom night. Mir's an endearing teen who chants the Gettysburg Address in place of religious mantras in times of stress, feels safe aski ng her dad tough questions about first love, and takes control of her body (and pleasure) when it comes to sex. While Mir and Nick's relationship builds, the author never lets the mystery falter as she keeps readers guessing about Syd's secrets and whereabouts. The ending is really a beginning as Mir finds both support and inner resilience. A beautiful new voice to watch. (Fiction. 14-18) Copyright Kirkus 2018 Kirkus/BPI Communications. All rights reserved.

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