Author: Fleur Ferris
Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
Genre: Contemporary, Mystery, Young Adult
Format Read: Audiobook
Publication Date: 30th June 2015 by Audible/Random House Australia
Synopsis: “Taylor and Sierra have been best friends for their whole lives. But Taylor’s fed up. Why does Sierra always get what – and who – she wants? From kissing Taylor’s crush to stealing the guy they both met online for herself, Sierra doesn’t seem to notice when she hurts her friends.
So when Sierra says Jacob Jones is the one and asks her friends to cover for her while she goes to meet him for the first time, Taylor rolls her eyes.
But Sierra doesn’t come back when she said she would.
One day. Two days. Three . . .
What if Taylor’s worrying for nothing? What if Sierra’s just being Sierra, forgetting about everyone else to spend time with her new guy?
When Taylor finally tells Sierra’s mum that her daughter is missing, Taylor and her friends are thrown into a dark world they never even knew existed.
Can Taylor find Sierra’s abductor in time? Or should she be looking for a killer?”
With all our apps and new technology, it’s easy to become desensitised to the danger that was once prominently advertised about stranger danger. Risk takes this idea and brings it to the forefront, highlighting an issue that not enough people talk about anymore — that there are people out there who do not have your best interests at heart.
Taylor and Sierra are two best friends, but as with many high school friendships, one is jealous of the other. Taylor is fed up with the fact that Sierra is prettier, kissed her secret crush without thought and has everything that Taylor wished she did herself. Sierra doesn’t seem to see that her actions are hurting others, and when Taylor and Sierra both fall for a man named Jacob Jones online, Taylor feels like it’s the final betrayal and refuses to accompany Sierra to meet Jacob face-to-face.
Taylor covers for Sierra when she decides to stay the night with Jacob…but when Sierra goes missing, Taylor comes clean and is thrown into a world that no one had even given a single thought to previously.
This book is hard to stomach at times, but it’s also an important read/listen for our generation of Internet-heads. While one side of the world wide web is filled with cat videos, it’s important to recognise that there also exists a deep, dark hole filled with lurkers that are up to no good.
Risk highlights this without being in-your-face about it. It’s a compelling story that explores friendship, familial relationships and how different people deal with grief.
Taylor is a relatable character, whose mild jealousy led to something horrible, and she has to live with that fact and learn to get past it. Sierra’s other friends Riley and Callum all deal with her disappearance differently too — Riley is wracked with guilt for not believing that Sierra could be in danger, Callum knew something was wrong and felt overwhelmed with sadness. It was interesting to see how the aftermath of Sierra’s disappearance brings people together, as well as pushes people apart.
The novel is realistic with its portrayal of emotions and doesn’t hold back on anything. The book is a mystery, but also a guidance for readers to be careful without being in-your-face about it.
Fleur Ferris did an excellent job with Risk, and guess what? It’s set in Melbourne! #LoveOzYA
If you’re looking for a contemporary mystery, or something with realistic characters, I highly recommend you pick up Risk in physical or Audiobook form.
Thank you to Text100 and Audible for a copy of the audiobook in exchange for an honest review.