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Sophie Last Seen

Narrated by: Madeline Mrozek
Length: 10 hrs and 27 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (23 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Six years ago, 10-year-old Sophie Albright disappeared from a shopping mall. Her mother, Jesse, is left in a self-destructive limbo, haunted by memories of her intense and difficult child, who was obsessed with birds. Trapped in her grief and guilt, Jesse stumbles through her workdays at a bookstore and spends her off hours poring over Sophie’s bird journals or haunting the mall to search for the face of her missing child.

When Star Silverman, Sophie’s best friend, starts working at the bookstore, Jesse is uncomfortable around the sarcastic teen, who is a constant reminder of her daughter. But Star has secrets of her own, and her childhood memories could be the key to solving Sophie’s disappearance.

With help from Star and Kentucky “Tuck” Barnes, a private detective on the trail of another missing girl, Jesse may finally get some closure, one way or the other.

©2018 Marlene Adelstein (P)2019 Marlene Adelstein

Critic Reviews

"A mother's psyche edges toward madness as she tries to solve the puzzle of her daughter's disappearance. A gripping tale of heartbreak and eternal hope." (Beth Hoffman, author of the NYT best seller Saving CeeCee Honeycutt)

"Unique, mysterious, and thoroughly absorbing, Sophie Last Seen is a touching story of love, loss, and survival. I loved it." (Alison Gaylin, USA Today best-selling author of If I Die Tonight

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A story that will stay with me forever

Jesse is broken. She has been for the last six years, since she lost Sophie, her ten-year-old child, at a shopping mall. Since then she has been looking for clues that could tell her where Sophie could be. Star was Sophie’s best friend, and she is haunted day and night about what might have happened to Sophie if she had kept her promise. Following clues left by Sophie, both women embark on a search for the lost girl, or at least to try to find out what happened to her.

I finished this book last night and I can’t stop thinking about it. I don’t remember the last book that gave me goosebumps like this one did. Sophie Last Seen is a character driven story in which both main characters suffer a deep transformation and grow together after a severe trauma. This is a book about grief, obsessions, but also friendship, and overcoming one’s feelings. There is a before and after, and life will never be the same, but one must learn how to continue living and let go.

This book has spoken directly to me in many ways, and it was so easy to relate to Jesse and Star. I could see myself making the same mistakes and suffering like the. I really felt for them: the anguish of not knowing, the fervent obsession of wanting to believe in something.

I have been following Madeline Mrozek for a while, but I think this time she has overcome herself narrating this book. She has brought the characters to life transmitting their emotions in a way that felt like listening to real people struggling with real problems. Dialogs between Jesse and Star were especially well made, creating the illusion of having two different people interacting. I could clearly hear the difference between both characters, and their style and voices reflected their personality. The differences were subtle but clear, and following their dialogs was easy. The audio production was just perfect.

This is a book that I want to recommend to everyone! It is very well written, with well-thought-out characters, and a moving plot. It is one of those stories that will stay with me forever.

I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Mothers will identify

Sophie Last Seen was a suspenseful journey with a guilt ridden mother whose child is abducted. The complexities of the characters lend to the believability and realism of the tale. The writer expertly shares the deepest and darkest sides of the characters in the story so we feel we know them and can identity with their pain. I liked how the plot was not predictable and had interesting twists. The narrator gives voice to each and every character with authenticity bringing the story even more to life. She has many challenges as there are so many different characters to voice but she met them all with talent and skill. I particularly liked her ability to switch between characters flawlessly. Her young girl voices were spot on. I thoroughly enjoyed this audiobook and would recommend it to anyone who appreciates a good suspense.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Sophie Last Seen

Jesse can't move on from the day her daughter Sophie disappeared. (And really what parent can). This book has some really big feels in it. Distrust, leaves you suspecting almost everyone. Wondering who is crazy, makes you wonder if Jesse has lost it or if she's the only one sane. And Star, Sophie's best friend, is she crazy, still seeing Sophie?I had never thought about how this impacts not just the family but the friends and their families. How Marlene Adelstein brings this out is just perfect and brilliant. Who is lying, someone, somewhere saw something children do not just vanish. Who is lazy, have the police just gotten to lazy to keep looking. And the towns people seem to just feel sorry for the crazy lady aka bird mom of the missing bird girl, yet they also just start avoiding her. When does a whole town just give up on a mom looking or answers. Heartbreak, as secrets are revealed about everyone, your heart can't help but break a bit for them as you see how the dissaperance changes anyone close to the case. Madeline Mrozek does a fantastic job with the narration and bringing this story to life.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Emotionally exhausting but very good...

I needed a couple of days to get over the book and write this review; the story is haunting, emotionally exhausting and scary as hell, when you think about it - but you can't stop listening...

It's not so much a suspense story as a psychological study of what happens to a woman whose 10-year-old kid vanishes one day from a shopping centre in the split second when her mother turns away... Six years later Jesse, the mother, is still looking for clues, is still looking for her daughter's face in the face of every teenage girl she meets, is still gathering stuff which she thinks Sophie sends her way as signs and which others consider mere rubbish she's been hoarding... And she never loses hope to find out what reallly happened to her child, even when others tell her to let go and move on....

Jesse is the kind of character that will move you, anger you, irritate you and then move you again. You may not like her at times, but you will admire her perseverance, her unswerving belief that one day she will get to the truth.
The other two main characters - Star and Kentucky "Tuck" Barnes - are equally well written; a teenage girl hiding a secret that messes with her mental and physical health and an ex-cop with painful memories who becomes a pillar of strength Jesse needs.

It's a difficult book to listen to; but it's also a very good book to listen to. While it is scary - I can't imagine anyone reading it or listening to it and not thinking immediately about kids in your family and their safety - but it is also kind of therapeutic; it shows you that people mourn in different ways, that for some mourning takes longer, but for everyone there comes a time when we find closure... And that's an optimistic thought.

Narration by Ms Mrozek is great. She brings characters to life; her interpretation of Jesse if perfect - she's irritating, moving, sometimes pitiful, sometimes warm and loving... Star's and Barnes's and all the other characters' personalities are equally well conveyed. This interpretation is what has made the book even scarier and more emotionally engaging and exhausting for me - in the best sense:) A great job, Ms Mrozek:)

DISCLAIMER: I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Jan M
  • Southwest
  • 07-21-19

Heartbreaking!

Sophie Last Seen by Marlene Adelstein is the nightmare mother's fear. Madeline Mrozek was magical performing this book. She brought the characters to life. I could hear exactly who was speaking. The story focuses around Jesse and her guilt over her daughter's disappearance. As a mother, I could easily relate in wanting a moments peace when dealing with a high demand child. Both author and narrator captured the emotions and feelings of the characters. This book gave me a new perspective on many things. I requested this review copy audiobook and have voluntarily written this review. I will most definitely listen to more books by this author and narrator. I really thought this book captured the feelings of living after loss and the need to find answers. The twists in the story were so well done. I was surprised with the ending, and found peace with it.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Another Great Performance by Madeline Mrozek

Marlene Adelstein writes a good story, that keeps the interest level higher than average. The best part of the book is the excellent narration by Madeline Mrozek. Ms Mrozek is always a pleasure to listen to and never disappoints. Sophie Last Seen is definitely worth your time. "I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.”

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Missing

Sophie Last Seen is a book about a mothers and fathers worst nightmare. Jesse Albright’s 10 year old daughter is obsessed with birds and disappeared at a local shopping mall 6 years ago while shopping with her mother. Jesse has trouble moving forward in her grief and her marriage falls apart. She copes by collecting everything and anything that she feels will provide a clue to her daughter Sophie’s whereabouts. She is considered odd and strange in her small town and she has cut ties with almost everyone. Jesse reconnects with Sophie’s best childhood friend Star, who is also having trouble dealing with her friend’s disappearance. Together they unravel the mystery about what happened to Sophie. This was a great audible and look forward to others by this author.
I was given this free review copy audio book at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Sophie Last Seen

This is a story about pain, loss and healing. How grief can affect us all in different ways, and how it can alter the path of our lives. It was a little slow to start out for me, but I was able to empathize with Jessie immediately. What I really like about this story is how real the characters are. The main character is dealing with the loss of her missing daughter, and is as crazy and desperate as one could imagine.
The performance is good too, professional and enjoyable to listen to.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars

this book was given to me at my request for review

first off I Pray for all families who have lost a child. I loved this book, I had a hard time at first understanding how Jessie could collect all the junk, but after listening to a few chapters I started to understand. I couldn't stop listening to this book.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Good Mystery

This story follows the life of a woman who's ten-year-old daughter went missing. It deals with her grief and the constant wondering of "what happened", then one day she discovers a clue. Following on from that, the mystery starts to bear answers. I thought the characters, writing and world building were good. I also think the narration and production are well done.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Profile Image for Helen
  • Helen
  • 07-21-19

amazing heart stopping book

Get Tissues ready
Six years ago, 10-year-old Sophie Albright disappeared from a shopping mall.
Unique, mysterious, and thoroughly absorbing, Sophie Last Seen is a touching story of love, loss, and survival. I loved it.
amazing heart stooping book by Marlene Adelstein
Narrated by: Madeline Mrozek who brought it to life