14 May 2011

Let's get lost - Sarra Manning

Let's get lost by Sarra Manning
published 2006
young adult
bought my copy

16 year old Isabel is the most feared girl at her school, she's mean and others know that it's better to stay out of her way. She learned the hard way that being weak is punished at school, so she decided that being a bully is safer. Even her mother's recent death doesn't seem to touch her, at least not on the surface. But inside Isabel is broken since the day her mother died and she doesn't know how to go on with living. At home her father and she fight daily, they just can't deal with what happened.
When she meets Smith, she tries to use him to forget her pain. But Smith is not like the other guys she knows, he can see through her defence mechanism and soon she realizes that with him she can be herself again.
But their relationship is based on lies and when they are exposed, Isabel is even more broken than before. Will she be able to find a way to deal with her new life and will she be able to be happy again?

And yet another review for a book written by Sarra Manning. I just love the way she writes and creates her characters. She makes them full of flaws and still so likable. If you are looking for perfect characters who never do stupid things, then this book is not for you. But if you are looking for real and raw characters, then you might love this book just as much as I did.

I never thought that I would come to like a heroine who's a bully so much, but I was fascinated (in a positive way) with Isabel right from the start on. I felt with her and her pain was so palpable that at times I hurt when she hurt. I could even understand why she acted in such a mean way even though I couldn't approve of it. I liked that Isabel was sarcastic, snarky and acted as a bully even before she lost her mom. I don't thinks it's realistic when one event changes a person completly. More often than not a tragic event will only change parts of your personality and that's exactly what happened in "Let's get lost". 
It was mesmerizing to see how she tried to go on with her life without feeling a sense in it. Her mothers death and what lead to it broke something in her and Isabel had a hard time to put together the broken pieces of her heart.

Isabel's father was also not perfect, his actions were in my opinion worse because as the adult he should have been there for his children and not drown his problems in alcohol. It took him a long time to deal with his grief and to really see Isabel again. At times I was very angry with him however in the end I was happy with the way Isabel and he found a way back to being a family. Both had to accept that some events just happen and that nobody is to blame for it.

The relationship between Isabel and Smith was sweet, messed up, edgy and so good. Sarra Manning doesn't shy away from creating characters that mess up and that you want to shake from time to time. Both Isabel and Smith did stupid things, even though Isabel's lies created the main issues between them. I especially loved the tender momets between them because in those you could see Isabel without her facade.

The epilogue was beautiful and fit perfectly to the book. It's exactly what Isabel needed to go on with her life and to be happy again.

I think the colours on the cover are beautiful and the girl really looks like she tries to forget some painful memories.

final appraisal
"Let's get lost" is a powerful story about going on with life after a tragedy happened. Isabel is an unusual heroine and the story is wonderfully messed up. I would recommend this book to all readers who enjoy raw and edgy young adult stories.


  1. I really like the sound of this book, bullies have usually had something to happen to make them that way and I think a book that explores this is a fantastic idea, as you say the fact that she obviously had issues before hand and doesn't just have a sudden change in personality is a good thing.
    I'm going to be adding this to my wish list!

  2. nope, not a book for me. But nice review.

  3. Thanks for the review! I've read both Unsticky and YDHTSYLM recently and I'm now a Manning fan. I have yet to try her YA. Looks like this may be a good place to start.

  4. @ Louse: Hope you will enjoy the book.

    @ Holly: I also started with her adult books (now I'm a Sarra Manning fangirl) and now I'm reading her older YA titles. I think "Let's get lost" is really a good place to start.




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