Krista Reviews: Sophie Littlefield's - "Hanging by a Thread"


Summer is the best part of the year in Winston, California, and the Fourth of July is the highlight of the season. But the perfect town Clare remembers has changed, and everyone is praying that this summer will be different from the last two—that this year’s Fourth of July festival won’t see one of their own vanish without a trace, leaving no leads and no suspects. The media are in a frenzy predicting a third disappearance, but the town depends on tourist dollars, so the residents of Winston are trying desperately to pretend nothing’s wrong.

And they’re not the only ones hiding something.

Clare, a seamstress who redesigns vintage clothing, has been blessed—or perhaps cursed—with a gift: she can see people’s pasts when she touches their clothes. When she stumbles across a denim jacket that once belonged to Amanda Stavros, last year’s Fourth of July victim, Clare sees her perfect town begin to come apart at the seams.

In a town where appearance means everything, how deep beneath the surface will Clare dig to uncover a murderer?

Hardcover, 288 pages

Expected publication: September 11th 2012 by Delacorte Books for Young Readers

ISBN 0385741049 (ISBN13: 9780385741040)

Clare loves to design her own clothing, sometimes even sell her designs. Her main passion in life is shopping for vintage items at charity shops to redesign into an outfit of her own style and making.

Clare also happens to have visions. When she touches fabric she has visions from the lives of those that wore them. As she loves to design her own clothes and shop at used stores she has these visions often. But when she happens upon one particular girl’s jacket, visions pulls her into the mystery of what really happened that night the girl went missing a year ago. Clare is torn over how deeply she should get into investigating the visions that the jacket is causing. It scares her how vivid they have become. But when Clare’s friend receives a threat, the mystery of what the jacket is trying to tell her about the murders becomes a priority. It may just be a matter of life and death.

Clare is an eclectic character. She has a few but dedicated friends, she has a passion for clothing and designs and style. The family dynamics and relationship between herself, her mother and her grandmother was my favorite part of the story. They struggle to put together lost relationships and work through their past disagreements.

At first Clare, like a lot of others, suspects it is the boyfriend who caused the girl’s disappearance. But upon making friends with him, she can see that he would not have done it. She continues to ask questions and has several visions that pull her deeper into the mystery.

She is a very caring person and even though her visions are scary and most would not get involved, she reaches out and in the end we have a story of loss, mystery, family and friends. Through Clare’s investigations and visions we get to see how close the people in the town are to each other.


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