In my BuzzFeed craze, I found a list of 14 books to read before their movie versions hit theatres and among Divergent and If I Stay, I found Kimberly McCreight’s Reconstructing Amelia. I’m glad I stumbled upon the list!
McCreight, a former lawyer turned author depicts a mother’s worst nightmare: dealing with her child’s suicide. Reconstructing Amelia is McCreight’s debut novel and it’s one hell of a novel, I might add! Kate Baron is a partner in a big legal firm in New York, which essentially means she’s crazy busy trying to juggle her work life along with her personal life and her teenage daughter, Amelia. On top of that, she’s a single mom. During an important meeting, Kate receives a call from Amelia’s school; Amelia has been suspended effective immediately for plagiarizing an English paper. Weird thing is, Amelia is the most well-read person Kate knows and well on her way to an Ivy League school. By the time Kate makes it down to Amelia’s school in Brooklyn, Amelia is dead. Her body was found outside the school and her death is quickly deemed a suicide: Amelia jumped off the roof. End of story.
Except it’s not the end of the story. Amelia was smart, she was well-liked, she was happy. Kate can’t seem to believe that Amelia would have jumped off that roof and it seems as though someone else doesn’t believe it either. A month after Amelia’s death, Kate receives a text from an unknown number: “Amelia didn’t jump.”
That text jump starts the novel into a fast-paced narrative focused around Kate’s struggle to find out exactly what happened to her daughter. Along the way, Kate discovers a secret club, which might have cost Amelia her life.
McCreight does an excellent job of weaving Kate’s present narrative with Amelia’s past narrative in order to uncover exactly what happens within the walls of a high school and the torment girls endure at the hands of a cruel society.
I highly recommend giving Reconstructing Amelia a read. You won’t be able to put the book down!