Read Mrs. Freytag's review of the book below:
“Nearly Gone” is a murder mystery about an intelligent young woman, named Nearly, from ‘the wrong side of the tracks’, who is trying to excel in her high school studies so she can earn a college scholarship and get out of town. She lives with her mom, who has a questionable job working nights, and with the exception of a few close friends, is basically a loner. She spends most of her time studying, and tutors other students to help earn household income.
Every day she checks the newspaper personals section, hoping for some kind of message from her dad, who left her and her mom long ago. When she comes upon a mysterious cryptic message, she uses her knowledge and skills to crack the code and figure out where the message is leading her. She solves the mystery about the same time a fellow student is found murdered. As new cryptic messages appear in the newspaper, she uses her intelligence and knowledge of math, science, chemistry, astronomy etc. to solve them. At the same time, other people are attacked as well, and Nearly has direct ties to all of them.
“Nearly Gone” is intense and exciting, and leads you through a roller coaster of events as different people become suspects and it becomes a race against time for Nearly to solve the final clue. I was SURE I knew who was committing the crimes, then changed my mind. And then changed my mind again! A very good book I highly recommend.