You Must Not Miss

You Must Not Miss

Book - 2019
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One of Us Is Lying meets Carrie in this suspenseful story of friendship, family, and revenge. Magpie Lewis started writing in her yellow notebook the day her family self-destructed. That was the night Eryn, Magpie's sister, skipped town and left her to fend for herself. That was the night of Brandon Phipp's party. Now, Magpie is called a slut whenever she walks down the hallways of her high school, her former best friend won't speak to her, and she spends her lunch period with a group of misfits who've all been socially exiled like she has. And so, feeling trapped and forgotten, Magpie retreats to her notebook, dreaming up a place called Near. Near is perfect--somewhere where her father never cheated, her mother never drank, and Magpie's own life never derailed so suddenly. She imagines Near so completely, so fully, that she writes it into existence, right in her own backyard. It's a place where she can have anything she wants...even revenge. You Must Not Miss is a twisted and suspenseful tale of magic, menace, and the monsters that live inside us all.
"When seventeen-year-old Magpie Lewis discovers a magical world in her backyard, she uses it and its powers to enact her revenge on all those who have wronged her"--
Publisher: New York ;, Boston :, Little, Brown and Company,, 2019.
Edition: First edition.
ISBN: 9780316449779
0316449776
Branch Call Number: TEEN FICTION Leno Katrina 04/2019
Characteristics: 294 pages ;,22 cm

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jasminestea
Aug 26, 2019

I will start by stating that I don't generally read YA, and haven't read a "teen" novel in a few years. But, You Must Not Miss was recommended under a horror list so I figured I would give it a try.
And: it was weird. The concept was as if a very dark and twisted Chronicles of Narnia and 13 Reasons Why mashed together. The plot was relatively easy to follow, although I'm not sure if it really added up to a 'real plot' -- Magpie (I couldn't get over this nickname for the life of me) is angry and calling for revenge after her family life and best friendship become upturned in a single night. A lot of the relationships are just thrown together or ripped apart without much of an explanation beyond teen angst. There are whispers of mental health issues, addiction issues, and important topics such as LGBTQ+ and understanding and/or acknowledging abuse within relationships, but nothing is ever fully developed.
The conclusion is open-ended and lackluster, leaving you needing further explanation of the promised creative and unique storyline. I wouldn't categorize this novel with horror, and I wouldn't recommend it to a teen -- I think it causes more problems than it does anything else. I'm not sure the novel even makes sense. And that's the tea.

samcmar Apr 12, 2019

I adore Katrina Leno's writing, and You Must Not Miss reminded me of the level of versatility that she has when creating stories. While a lot of Leno's books have a magical or fantastical element, they are still deeply rooted in the real world and often its the overall tone that provides a uniqueness to each and everyone one of her books.

Magpie is wonderfully intense and destructive as a character. Her overall suffering and deep hatred of herself places the reader in a difficult position when reading this book. There's a lot of anger, there's so much venom being spouted throughout this story from both those that surround our heroine, but also Magpie herself. I won't lie, trying to be supportive of Magpie is challenging in this story, especially given some of the "decisions" she makes, but I think it's a great deconstruction of dealing with mental illness or dealing with immediate crisis even.

The suffering and self-sabotage by Magpie's character in this story is oddly a draw. Leno has this amazing way of dragging the reader into the minds of her heroines -- sometimes you feel like you are steps ahead of them, and others, like Magpie make you feel lost or question what will happen next. This reminded me a lot of Leno's first novel, The Half Life of Molly Pierce where I was so emotionally exhausted but equally invested in what was happening.

I recognize that I am being purposely vague about the plot in You Must Not Miss and it's with good intention. It's one of those books where the twists and turns feel weird, crazy, and often you'll ask yourself what the heck you read -- but that is actually what makes this story so appealing in my eyes. I got completely lost in it, but didn't feel a compulsive need to rush through the story. It's a difficult read, no questions asked, but it's equally a rewarding, twisty, mess of a story that keeps you guessing from the get-go.

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OPL_KrisC Jun 01, 2019

OPL_KrisC thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over

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