Island of Lost Girls: A Novel
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While parked at a gas station, Rhonda sees something so incongruously surreal that at first she hardly recognizes it as a crime in progress. She watches, unmoving, as someone dressed in a rabbit costume kidnaps a young girl. Devastated over having done nothing, Rhonda joins the investigation. But the closer she comes to identifying the abductor, the nearer she gets to the troubling truth about another missing child: her best friend, Lizzy, who vanished years before.
From the author of the acclaimed Promise Not to Tell comes a chilling and mesmerizing tale of shattered innocence, guilt, and ultimate redemption.
door. She gave herself her best pirate sneer. “Do you like it?” she said to Ronnie, in her own voice now. “I’ve been practicing.” Rhonda nodded. “It’s good. Very piratey.” “It’s still missing something,” Lizzy said. “I think what I need is a mustache.” Rhonda followed Lizzy down the hall to her parents’ bedroom, where she rummaged through Aggie’s makeup on the dressing table until she found an eyebrow pencil. She also took a gold hoop earring. “Wanna see something?” Lizzy asked, once she’d
first perch now, but she was all the way at the top, swaying as she clung to the thin peak. “As a matter of fact, I can. I could act circles around you.” Lizzy and the O’Sheas came running into the clearing then, carrying buckets of water and squirt guns. They stopped at the base of the stage and looked up into the tree, to the same spot Rhonda was squinting at. “So why don’t you prove it then?” he asked. “Be in our play.” Peter was just below Greta now, and the top of the tree bent and swayed
was a part of things. RHONDA HAD BEEN studiously avoiding her father, using the play as an excuse to be away from home as much as possible. She would run in for meals, let her mother heap tuna sandwiches or pork chops on her plate, while Rhonda sat in her white nightgown and told them little details about her day, like that Peter had let that awful Greta Clark join the play. But she couldn’t avoid her father forever. “I think it’s time you and I had a talk,” he said to her after dinner,
Peter’s face again. “Don’t you ever hope that maybe someday she’ll come back and explain everything?” “What is there to explain?” Peter asked, shifting his weight, sounding a little exasperated. “I don’t know…why she left, I guess. What she’s been doing with herself all these years. Maybe she’s married and has kids. You could be an uncle! Don’t you ever wonder what she does every day, what she sees each morning when she gets up?” “Of course I wonder, but it’s her choice that we don’t know.”
Carl, who works at Pat’s, saw Peter on the day of the kidnapping at a motel in town. I think he was with Lizzy…and that they may have had Ernie.” “His sister Lizzy? I thought you said she’d run away or been kidnapped or something when you were still kids?” Rhonda nodded. “I think she came back.” “But why would they take Ernie?” Rhonda blew out a frustrated breath. “I don’t know. None of it makes any sense. But there’s one way to find out. I’m ready for the real truth, this time. I’ll just