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Nearly Gone
Cover of Nearly Gone
Nearly Gone
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Bones meets Fringe in a big, dark, scary, brilliantly-plotted urban thriller that will leave you guessing until the very end Nearly Boswell knows how to keep secrets. Living in a DC trailer park, she...
Bones meets Fringe in a big, dark, scary, brilliantly-plotted urban thriller that will leave you guessing until the very end Nearly Boswell knows how to keep secrets. Living in a DC trailer park, she...
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Description-

  • Bones meets Fringe in a big, dark, scary, brilliantly-plotted urban thriller that will leave you guessing until the very end

    Nearly Boswell knows how to keep secrets. Living in a DC trailer park, she knows better than to share anything that would make her a target with her classmates. Like her mother's job as an exotic dancer, her obsession with the personal ads, and especially the emotions she can taste when she brushes against someone's skin. But when a serial killer goes on a killing spree and starts attacking students, leaving cryptic ads in the newspaper that only Nearly can decipher, she confides in the one person she shouldn't trust: the new guy at school—a reformed bad boy working undercover for the police, doing surveillance. . . on her.

    Nearly might be the one person who can put all the clues together, and if she doesn't figure it all out soon—she'll be next.

 

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Excerpts-

  • From the book

    Most scientific laws can be boiled down to a simple mathematical if-then equation. If you follow the rules, then you get the desired result. If you deviate, then there is a consequence. The rules of law don't concern themselves with why.

    My mother really only had three rules: A) no bad grades, B) no trouble, and C) no touching. A + B + C = admission to a good college. In her mind, this was an incontrovertible direct mathematical proof. It wasn't a theory. It was the only possible outcome.

    I used to believe that too. But that was before I started to wonder why.

    Sometimes, the only way to find a solution is to break the rules.

    1

    "Who can tell me the purpose of Dr. Schrödinger's experiment?" Mr. Rankin paced between the rows on the other side of the classroom.

    I huddled over my open textbook, concealing the Missed Connections ad in the personals section, dissecting the words again for some hidden meaning. Newton was wrong. We clash with yellow. Find me tonight under the bleachers. It read like a science riddle, and I couldn't seem to stop looking at it. Stupid.

    "Anyone?" Rankin's chalk-smudged slacks paused beside me. I inched my arm over the ad. I'd never been so careless to read them during class. Especially so close to the end of the semester, with finals only a few weeks away. Stupid. No personal ad was worth losing a scholarship over.

    He passed on, and I tucked the folds of the Missed Connections tighter under my textbook.

    At the blackboard, Rankin underlined the words DEAD OR ALIVE. He'd scrawled them there yesterday at the end of class, along with a reading assignment, a disturbing preview of today's lecture.

    "Dead or alive? This is the question quantum physicists havewrestled with since Erwin Schrödinger first devised his experiment in 1935. Mr. Petrenko, do you care to enlighten us?"

    Every head turned to the back of the room, where Oleksander Petrenko reclined, his feet crossed at the ankles, fingers threaded behind his head. The laces on his black high-tops were red, which always seemed out of character to me. Everything else about him—his buzz cut, the sharp angle of his jaw, his brusque Ukrainian accent—was clipped, stark, and ascetic.

    He shrugged beneath a dark hoodie. "What is the point?" The consonants rolled off his tongue, stopping abruptly against his square white teeth. He blinked gray eyes, sharply outlined in dark lashes. His lids were hooded, making him look bored when he finally answered. "Schrödinger was a physicist. This is AP Chemistry."

    I suppressed a smile. I didn't have one thing in common with Oleksa, but I couldn't agree more. Schrödinger's experiment wasn't about chemistry or even physics. It was a matter of philosophy, and philosophy had no place here. Hard science follows rules. Its assertions are quantifiable and concrete. Clamp down the facts under a bright light and magnify them to the 10x power until the details are so clear, the truth isn't a matter of debate. It justis.

    Rankin raised one eyebrow and approached Oleksa's desk, drumming his fingers on the surface. Oleksa regarded them coldly, as if he might enjoy breaking them.

    "As usual, Mr. Petrenko, you are smarter than you are industrious. This is indeed Advanced Placement Chemistry. I assume this to mean you have the capacity to appreciate the broader implications of Schrödinger's experiment. I am continually amazed that someone with such a large brain can be so small-minded." I cringed, feeling the sting of Rankin's insult. I wasn't small-minded.

    Oleksa crossed his arms and...

Reviews-

  • Publisher's Weekly

    January 13, 2014
    In an impressive debut, Cosimano delivers a tense thriller that sees a teenage math whiz pitted against a serial killer who’s knocking off her classmates in increasingly fiendish ways. When 16-year-old Nearly “Leigh” Boswell discovers that a killer is leaving her coded messages in the newspaper personals, she becomes the only one capable of solving the murders. But all of the evidence points to her as the chief suspect—someone’s making it extremely personal. With her only ally being the teenage narc (and resident bad boy) assigned to investigate her for the police, Leigh must somehow solve the case before she loses her friends, her freedom, or her life. Cosimano weaves together math riddles, science-based clues, an edgy romance, and psychological terror to create an unpredictable page-turner. Nearly’s psychometric ability to glean emotions through touch is somewhat underexploited, and some of the clues are so blatant it’s a wonder she overlooks them. Nevertheless, this is a good choice for fans of “savant” procedurals and dramas like Bones, Elementary, or Numbers. Ages 14–up. Agent: Sarah Davies, Greenhouse Literary Agency.

  • Kirkus

    January 15, 2014
    In a suspenseful high school whodunit, AP chemistry student Nearly "Leigh" Boswell investigates a series of murders for which someone is trying to frame her. Every week, Leigh (which she really prefers to her given name, Nearly) combs the missed-connections ads in her local paper, hoping for word from the father who disappeared years ago. On the day her chemistry teacher lectures the class about Schrodinger's cat, Leigh spots an eerie outlier among the messages: "Newton was wrong....Find me tonight under the bleachers." After a math tutee's brutal attack, a scrawled warning in Leigh's desk, and a dead cat delivered to Leigh's doorstep, complete with Schrodinger reference, a second science-themed personal ad convinces Leigh that something nefarious is afoot. With regard to believability, the science-class conceits are as tricky to swallow as the idea that a teenager in 2014 browses print personals. But the point here isn't realism--it's puzzles. Cryptic missed-connections clues, a sequence of numbers left on the victims' bodies, and of course, the identity and motive of the murderer leave plenty for readers to contemplate as Leigh rushes to crime scenes and runs from the police. The story's single supernatural element--when Leigh touches people, she experiences their emotions--is woven deftly into the story, and the romance plot is compelling. Tense and engaging--well worth the effort of suspending one's disbelief. (Mystery. 12-18)

    COPYRIGHT(2014) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • School Library Journal

    Starred review from February 1, 2014

    Gr 9 Up-In this suspenseful and thrilling murder mystery, high school junior Nearly Boswell is struggling to get by in a Washington, DC trailer park with her single mother, who works the night shift at a local strip club. Any chance she has of escaping her miserable life is dependent on a highly competitive scholarship for which she and her best friend are vying against each other. Everything is going according to plan until Nearly spots an eerie personal ad in the local newspaper-an ad that ends up being a clue in the attempted murder of one of her classmates. She soon finds another clue in the following week's paper leading to another murder. And then another. The police won't take her seriously, and when the hints start pointing in her direction, Nearly becomes their number one suspect. The only person she can trust is bad boy Reece, whom she suspects is working with the police to keep a close eye on her. The clock is ticking, and Nearly must hurry to solve the homicides, and prove her own innocence, before it is too late. There is a hint of the paranormal in this murder mystery, as Nearly has an unusual gift that allows her to "taste" the emotions of others when she touches their skin. Eloquently written and packed full of suspense, debut author Cosimano strikes gold with this page-turning thriller that will have teens chomping at the bit to get to the end. Give this to fans of Kimberly Derting's The Body Finder (HarperCollins, 2010) or anyone else who is looking for a captivating murder mystery.-Candyce Pruitt-Goddard, Hartford Public Library, CT

    Copyright 2014 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

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