If You’re Out There by Katy Loutzenhiser
After Zan’s best friend moves to California, she is baffled and crushed when Priya suddenly ghosts. Worse, Priya’s social media has turned into a stream of ungrammatical posts chronicling a sunny, vapid new life that doesn’t sound like her at all.
Everyone tells Zan not to be an idiot: Let Priya do her reinvention thing and move on. But until Zan hears Priya say it, she won’t be able to admit that their friendship is finished.
It’s only when she meets Logan, the compelling new guy in Spanish class, that Zan begins to open up about her sadness, her insecurity, her sense of total betrayal. And he’s just as willing as she is to throw himself into the investigation when everyone else thinks her suspicions are crazy.
Then a clue hidden in Priya’s latest selfie introduces a new, deeply disturbing possibility:
Maybe Priya isn’t just not answering Zan’s emails.
Maybe she can’t.
I really hope that my best friends are like Zan and never give up on me.
Zan and Priya were best friends. Their moms were friends until Priya’s mom died. They did everything together. Zan had other people she would talk to, but not a real friend like Priya. So it was killing her that not only did Priya move to California, but she also stopped talking to her. Priya left with her step-dad, Ben. Zan stayed behind in Chicago, living with her mom, her mom’s girlfriend, and her little brother. She worked a lot all summer, but now school has started and she can’t stop thinking about Priya.
Logan is the new kid at school. He lives with his aunt and younger sister. There are a lot of rumors that Logan was a criminal and was trying to start over in Chicago. He starts talking to Priya and for some reason, she tells him the story of Priya. How her intagram stories don’t sound like her. How she would never stop talking to Zan. How her photos don’t show her. She also starts replying back to people in a strange way.
Logan and Zan start looking into every clue they can find. They visit Priya’s boyfriend at college. Zan talks to Priya’s dad. They go to her house. All they find are more questions. During this time, we see Zan suffering a lot with her loss. She goes back and forth between sadness and anger. It starts to affect her family and school. Logan is dealing with his own issues from his past in Indiana. But they grow closer as they spend more and more time together.
This was a great mystery, but it was also a wonderful story of true friendship. How you know your best friend so well and you would have to know when something isn’t right. Zan never gives up, even when everyone tells her to just let it go.
I gave this book 4 stars. Thank you to the publisher and Edelweiss for my copy for review.
Warnings for addiction, family issues, and grief. There is more I should warn about, but I don’t want to ruin the story. Just know that this is a mystery, so everything isn’t sweet.
Have you read this one yet? Is it on your TBR?