Michelle's Reviews > Chasing Alliecat

Chasing Alliecat by Rebecca Fjelland Davis
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Mar 17, 2011

it was ok
bookshelves: 2011, ya, contemp
Read in March, 2011

Summer is not turning out quite how Sadie Lester would have liked. Even though her mother basically dropped her off in the middle of Minnesota to live with her aunt and uncle and their bajillion kids for the summer, Sadie is determined to still find time for her true passion - mountain biking. Fortunately, Sadie quickly discovers that the wilds of Minnesota are actually the perfect place to not only one her riding skills but to escape the craziness of her new home. And her skills quickly begin to improve, especially after Sadie meets the fearless and focused rider Allie. Accompanied by Sadie's 'cousin' Joe, Allie continually forces the trio to push their bodies to the utmost limits, without ever exhibiting any fear. That is until they discover a dead priest in the woods and Allie disappears after reporting the crime that Sadie begins to realize just how desperate Allie's life has recently become and her determination to help her new friend no matter what.

As unique storylines go, Chasing AllieCat is an absolute winner. When approached with the possibility of reviewing a novel about a teenage GIRL who mountain bikes competitively with the added bonus of a mysterious murder, well you can imagine my desire to dive right in. Talk about your strong, empowered heroine! Sadie (and Allie) is all of those things as she pushes herself physically in her riding. But more importantly she always remains a relatable teenager, suffering from self-doubt and even fear of success.

Rebecca Fjelland Davis does an excellent job of creating a world full of annoying little cousins, redneck neighbors, and above all the ferocious Allie to populate Sadie's summer. Basically every single individual (with the glaring exception of Sadie's 'cousin' Joe who I could never wrap my brain around) was utterly real and full of personality. Combined with Ms. Davis' excellent sense of place - the backwoods of Minnesota - and you have a compelling mystery I'm sure most teens will gobble right up.
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