Shelf Control #44: Reconstructing Amelia

Shelves final

Welcome to the newest weekly feature here at Bookshelf Fantasies… Shelf Control!

Shelf Control is all about the books we want to read — and already own! Consider this a variation of a Wishing & Waiting post… but looking at books already available, and in most cases, sitting right there on our shelves and e-readers.

Want to join in? See the guidelines and linky at the bottom of the post, and jump on board! Let’s take control of our shelves!


My Shelf Control pick this week is:

Reconstructing AmeliaTitle: Reconstructing Amelia
Author: Kimberly McCreight
Published: 2013
Length: 382 pages

What it’s about (synopsis via Goodreads):

A stunning debut novel in which a single mother reconstructs her teenaged daughter’s life, sifting through her emails, texts, and social media to piece together the shocking truth about the last days of her life.

Litigation lawyer and harried single mother Kate Baron is stunned when her daughter’s exclusive private school in Park Slope, Brooklyn, calls with disturbing news: her intelligent, high-achieving fifteen-year-old daughter, Amelia, has been caught cheating.

Kate can’t believe that Amelia, an ambitious, levelheaded girl who’s never been in trouble would do something like that. But by the time she arrives at Grace Hall, Kate’s faced with far more devastating news. Amelia is dead.

Seemingly unable to cope with what she’d done, a despondent Amelia has jumped from the school’s roof in an act of “spontaneous” suicide. At least that’s the story Grace Hall and the police tell Kate. And overwhelmed as she is by her own guilt and shattered by grief, it is the story that Kate believes until she gets the anonymous text:

She didn’t jump.

Sifting through Amelia’s emails, text messages, social media postings, and cell phone logs, Kate is determined to learn the heartbreaking truth about why Amelia was on Grace Hall’s roof that day-and why she died.

Told in alternating voices, Reconstructing Amelia is a story of secrets and lies, of love and betrayal, of trusted friends and vicious bullies. It’s about how well a parent ever really knows a child and how far one mother will go to vindicate the memory of a daughter whose life she could not save.

How I got it:

I bought the Kindle version when I saw a price drop.

When I got it:

In 2014, I think.

Why I want to read it:

I’m pretty cautious about hyped books, but the description of this one caught my eye, despite the blurbs at the time of release which called it the next Gone Girl. (Ugh, when will thrillers stop being compared to Gone Girl? Enough already.) It sounds intense and disturbing and fascinating… and although I often shy away from books with daughters in peril, I think I’ll give this one a go sometime soon.


Want to participate in Shelf Control? Here’s how:

  • Write a blog post about a book that you own that you haven’t read yet.
  • Add your link below!
  • And if you’d be so kind, I’d appreciate a link back from your own post.
  • Check out other posts, and have fun!

For more on why I’ve started Shelf Control, check out my introductory post here, or read all about my out-of-control book inventory, here.

And if you’d like to post a Shelf Control button on your own blog, here’s an image to download (with my gratitude, of course!):

Shelf Control




7 thoughts on “Shelf Control #44: Reconstructing Amelia

  1. I recently read this and enjoyed it. If you think you know everything that goes on in teenagers’ lives, think again! (Maybe not to this extreme, however…) Looking forward to your review.

  2. I admit this one didn’t catch my own interest initially when it came out, but then all the rave reviews from book bloggers has me thinking it might be worth reading after all. It’s been on my maybe-wishlist for awhile now. I hope you like it when you do get to it, Lisa!

    Great meme, by the way! I have SO many unread books on my shelves, and this is a great way to give them a little love despite not having read them yet.

    • Thanks! I started the meme because I was feeling so overwhelmed by all the books on my shelves. This actually help me keep older books in mind when I’m ready to start something new. 🙂

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