There You’ll Find Me, by Jenny B. Jones (Thomas Nelson, 2011)
Two years ago, Finley Sinclair’s older brother Will died in a terrorist attack while doing humanitarian work. She’s 18 now, and still broken. Her family hopes that a year as an exchange student in Ireland will bring her some closure, as she follows the steps Will recorded in his travel journal. Visiting the sites he loved will help her finish the music she’s composing in tribute, which will be her audition piece for entry into the New York Conservatory.
Teen actor Beckett Rush offers to be her driver—if she’ll work as his assistant. Beckett has charm, good looks, and a bad-boy reputation. She can’t finish her music without his truck, but can she resist his charms? And survive the venom of a jealous classmate?
Although Finley tries to talk to God, He’s been silent for a long time. Her music teacher, Sister Maria, is one safe place in the chaos around her. Her school community service project, visiting a hostile senior citizen, is not.
There You’ll Find Me is a young adult novel, and I’m hardly the target audience. But I’d heartily recommend it for teen girls and women of all ages. An unexpected bonus for me is that Finley is Alex’s younger sister from the author’s adult novel, Save the Date. I’d forgotten her name and was part way through the novel when I put the clues together, and I was so pleased to see her again and to get some news of the rest of the family.
Teens would enjoy Save the Date as well, but it’s not required. Each novel stands alone. Where one follows the other time-wise, reading There You’ll Find Me first would give away one or two key aspects of the first novel’s ending.
Jenny B. Jones is one of my favourite authors. Her characters come to life with a mix of spunk, sass and wit. There You’ll Find Me is funny, touching, and real. And the Ireland it portrays is beautiful. The Thomas Nelson product page has links to a sample chapter and to a discussion guide.
You can find Jenny at her website and her blog. While she’s best known for her young adults’ “Charmed Life” series, (which are good fun for adults as well) she’s also written two novels for adults (safe for teens too). I’ve reviewed them here: Just Between You and Me and Save the Date.
[Complimentary electronic review copy provided by the publisher through BookSneeze®]