Publication date: May 14th 2013
My rating: 4 stars
She’s been six different people in six different places: Madeline in Ohio, Isabelle in Missouri, Olivia in Kentucky . . . But now that she’s been transplanted to rural Louisiana, she has decided that this fake identity will be her last.
Witness Protection has taken nearly everything from her. But for now, they’ve given her a new name, Megan Rose Jones, and a horrible hair color. For the past eight months, Meg has begged her father to answer one question: What on earth did he do – or see – that landed them in this god-awful mess? Meg has just about had it with all the Suits’ rules — and her dad’s silence. If he won’t help, it’s time she got some answers for herself.
But Meg isn’t counting on Ethan Landry, an adorable Louisiana farm boy who’s too smart for his own good. He knows Meg is hiding something big. And it just might get both of them killed. As they embark on a perilous journey to free her family once and for all, Meg discovers that there’s only one rule that really matters — survival.
Anytime I hear mystery, romance, and danger as descriptors for a story my ears immediately perk up. I love the thrill of trying to piece together a mystery, and the way my heart rate races when reading suspenseful scenes. Add in a romance that makes me swoon, and you have my favorite type of read! The Rules For Disappearing ticked all those boxes for me.
Meg, the name she goes by now, has been moved six times in the last year as part of the Witness Protection Program. This time seemed different and more urgent. She was awakened in the middle of the night, and made to change her looks drastically before being whisked to the next location. Meg has been worn down by all the moves, forced to leave anyone she gets close to without a word. She’s determined to make this move different by isolating herself so that it doesn’t hurt so badly when she inevitably gets yanked out of this town. Meg is also determined to find out, once and for all, what the heck her father did to get them into this mess! Her family is slowly starting to come apart from all the stress, and she wants all this to end.
When she enrolls into her new school in Louisiana, not all goes as she planned. She gains the attention of Ethan, one of the popular boys at school and immediately he picks up on an inconsistency in her back-story. Also, her mother is coming apart at the seams, drinking herself into oblivion everyday to the point of jeopardizing her life. Add to this, Meg has the distinct feeling that someone is following her.
It was easy to be consumed by this story. If I met someone in real life who was in the Witness Protection Program I’m sure I’d have them cornered while I peppered them with questions of what it was like. I got this from Meg as her story is revealed little by little, and I wondered right along with her, what happened? I couldn’t help but feel bad for Meg and all her family went through, to find out how outgoing and popular they all once were and then to see them in the state they’re in now. I was rooting for them to get some answers and resolutions, so they could heal and get back to their normal selves.
Ethan undermines Meg’s plan to isolate herself because he just won’t give up on her. She can’t resist him even though she constantly feels she should. He sweet, gorgeous, and all-to-smart for Meg’s own good. *sigh* This is one of those romances where you just want to give Meg a little shake, and yell at her “let him in!!” Fear not my fellow romance junkies, nothing to fret about!
The Rules For Disappearing was an addictive read for me and I only put it down when I had to (darn real life!). Ms. Elston wrote a captivating debut and I plan on picking up anything else she writes!
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