Title: The Lost & Found
Author: Katrina Leno
Frannie and Louis met in an online support group when they were both younger. They have never met face-to-face. They don’t even know each other’s real names. All they know is that they both have a mysterious tendency to lose things. Well, not lose them, exactly. Things just seem to…disappear.
They each receive news in the mail that sets them off on a road trip to Austin, Texas, looking for answers—and each other. Along the way, each one begins to find, as if by magic, important things the other has lost. And by the time they finally meet in person, they realize that the things you lose might be things you weren’t meant to have at all, and that you never know what you might find if you just take a chance.
It was a total and utter impulse buy, made even more so because I rarely, rarely buy books I haven’t actually read first. AND it’s even rarer that I buy a brand new book I haven’t read from the realistic/contemporary section. But there was just something about it that kind of drew me to it so I bought it.
AND I FREAKING LOVED IT. Thumbs up, all the stars, ten out of ten, would read again.
You could stop reading my review right here because I just gave you my opinion.
But that wouldn’t be fun, would it?
Anyways, this novel has duel narrators. Frannie and Louis. They met over the internet, via an online support group (TILT), and hit it off. Both characters I LOVED (even though I think I loved Louis slightly more because I identified with him slightly more).
-Frannie is raised by her grandparents because her mother has some sort of mental illness (schizophrenia, maybe? It’s never actually said) that makes it so she’s not able to raise Frannie, and Frannie’s dad stabbed her with a pen when she was little, and so he has no contact with her. Frannie’s grandparents told her that her mother lived in a community in Florida, when really, she was in a mental hospital in Frannie’s town. Then her mom commits suicide, and her grandparents give Frannie a bunch of letters; in which Frannie’s mom insists that Frannie’s real dad is a famous movie star who lives in Texas.
-Louis is an LA native who’s parents run a fabric store. He has PTSD and anxiety from an accident that happened when he was little; his twin sister, Willa, fell off the fire escape and was run over by a car, which caused her to loose her legs. Louis has just gotten an acceptance letter and full ride tennis scholarship to a school in Texas, but he’s not sure if he wants to go (because ANXIETY).
-Both Louis and Frannie will be in Texas. They decide to meet.
-THIS BOOK HAS REALISTIC INTERNET FRIENDSHIPS AND I’M SO HAPPY. It seems like most books have all these warnings about how internet friends could really be creepy middle aged guys preying on you by saying they’re your age, but in this book, Louis and Frannie are exactly who they say they are. Sure, they wonder if the other person could be a serial killer waiting to murder them, and they go about actually meeting in a very realistic and careful way.
-THE SECONDARY CHARACTERS ARE EPIC. Louis’s sister, Willa, and Frannie’s cousin, Arrow, are both epic and amazing and complex. They don’t just become the shallow background people secondary characters sometimes do.
-Also, diversity. There’s the whole PTSD and anxiety thing, plus the fact that Willa’s missing her legs from her thighs down. But also, Arrow is adopted and Vietnamese. Louis and Willa are half Indian.
-The ending is amazing and imperfect and so realistic.
Really, my only problem with the book has to do with the fact that it isn’t contemporary. It’s actually magical realism.
-So both Frannie and Louis loose a lot of stuff, but it turns out there’s a magical twist to it, and I dunno, I just felt like it was unneeded.
-BUT THAT DOESN’T STOP ME FROM LOVING THIS BOOK.
How many of you have read The Lost & Found yet? If you have, did you like it? If you haven’t, do you want to? Does it ever make you frustrated when you pick up a book expecting one genre and getting another?