Sadie is one hell of a book.
I have always enjoyed mystery fiction but it’s hard to find a good YA mystery book. When I read raving reviews of Sadie, I knew I had to read it. When my Audible credits rolled in, I decided to get the audiobook. It was my first audiobook in 2019 and I have to say, I made the right choice.
“It’s a story about family, about sisters, and the untold lives lived in small-town America. It’s about the lengths we go to protect the ones we love … and the high price we pay when we can’t. And it begins, as so many stories do, with a dead girl.”
The quote above is the opening line of Sadie and that’s exactly what the book is about. We follow Sadie, who’s looking for her sister’s killer. To Sadie, her sister Mattie is the most important person in her life. She was raised by a single mother, drug-addict mother called Claire. When Sadie was six years old, her mother gave birth to Mattie and she has taken care of her ever since.
The story follows her journey to find who she believed was her sister’s murderer: Keith, her mother’s former boyfriend. She tracked down everyone connected to Keith, looked for information, and moved on to the next person. She has vowed to kill Keith once she found him so we knew that the story is going to be dark. Nobody took care of them and it’s clear that Sadie and Mattie were all each other haves. Listening to Sadie’s narrative was truly heartbreaking. Even though the journey was predicted to be lonely, turned out she met many people who would have cared about her along the way. These people gave her a glimpse of what her life could be or at least what normal could be like.
The chapters switch between Sadie’s POV and a podcaster called West McCray who started a podcast called The Girls to solve Sadie’s case. We will then hear McCray’s interview with the person Sadie tracked and met, albeit a few months later.
There’s nothing much I can say about the plot without spoiling anything. However, I have to say that Sadie is a gripping book. You wouldn’t want to stop reading the book. You could feel Sadie’s emotions and the urgency in her conquest to find justice for her sister. The situation painted in the story felt real and there were so many moments where my jaw dropped, my heart sank, and I got goosebumps from listening to what Sadie went through. As far as the ending goes, it may not for everyone, but I personally find it adds an element of genuinity and reality in the story.
As mentioned above, Sadie is written in the format of two POV, West McCray, a podcaster trying to solve Sadie’s case and Sadie herself. I believe that the format made the listening experience much more fun. The whole time I listened to the audiobook, it felt more like listening to podcast rather than audiobook. The tone used was more conversational and they use different voices for each character. Apparently, they feature more than 30 voices for this audiobook! For those of you who struggled with audiobooks, Sadie would be a great starting point.
The Girls: Find Sadie
The podcast portion of the book is available as a podcast called The Girls: Find Sadie on various podcast platform. If you plan on reading or listening to Sadie, give this podcast a listen beforehand. I only found out about the podcast after I finished the book and I kinda regret it. Listening to the podcast before you read the book will definitely enhance your reading experience. There is more to the story than what is being discussed on the podcast. If you listened to the podcast first, Sadie’s POV would be more shocking once you start reading the book.
Sadie – Courtney Summers
An innovative audiobook production featuring more than 30 voices, Sadie explores the depth of a sister’s love – poised to be the next story listeners won’t be able to pause.
A missing girl on a journey of revenge and a Serial-like podcast following the clues she’s left behind.
Sadie hasn’t had an easy life. Growing up on her own, she’s been raising her sister, Mattie, in an isolated small town, trying her best to provide a normal life and keep their heads above water.
But when Mattie is found dead, Sadie’s entire world crumbles. After a somewhat botched police investigation, Sadie is determined to bring her sister’s killer to justice and hits the road following a few meager clues to find him.
When West McCray – a radio personality working on a segment about small, forgotten towns in America – overhears Sadie’s story at a local gas station, he becomes obsessed with finding the missing girl. He starts his own podcast as he tracks Sadie’s journey, trying to figure out what happened, hoping to find her before it’s too late.
Courtney Summers’ Sadie is propulsive and harrowing and will keep listeners riveted until the last track.