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Damage Done

posted by: September 2, 2015 - 7:00am

Cover art for Damage DoneAmanda Panitch’s new psychological thriller Damage Done is being heralded by many as a Gone Girl read-alike for teen readers.

 

Julia Vann doesn’t remember anything that happened in the high school band room. She emerged the sole survivor of a shooting spree that left her boyfriend, best friend and nine other people dead. The shooter? Her twin brother Ryan.

 

Desperate to start a new life and leave the pain of the past behind them, her family changes names, moves south, and thus Julia is now Lucy Black. At her new school, Lucy has a best friend, a lunch table and a mild flirtation with a boy on the swim team who sits next to her in Spanish class. Life is attempting to get back to some semblance of normal. But then someone connected to that awful day starts appearing in unexpected places. Lucy knows that it is only a matter of time before the past will catch up with her; in order to stop the threat to her new life, she knows she must act quickly.

 

With danger at every turn, Panitch’s twisted novel does a lot to engage the reader from the first page. The author uses flashbacks from before the shooting to develop the codependent, unsettling relationship between Julia and Ryan. As the plot develops, readers are drawn to construct what really happened when Ryan entered the band room with the gun and what Julia swears she doesn’t remember. Damage Done is a great read for older teens who prefer something darker and more sinister than typical teen romantic fare.


 
 

Revised: November 18, 2015