Review by Booklist Review
Darcy is almost 18, which means she's almost a legal adult, though she's been taking on that role for years, trying to keep her mother from burying them under the weight of her hoarding problem. What once looked like a straight shot to the finish line becomes riddled with obstacles after her grandmother asks Darcy to chose between stability and her mother, her long-absent father suddenly reemerges, and a boy with his own troubles becomes (almost) all she can think about. The Library of Lost Things is a compelling family drama with a literary through line that will delight bibliophiles a classic lit quote begins every chapter, and Darcy works in a bookstore. Though the romance is appropriately sweet, it's Darcy's family dynamics the war waging within her between love and resentment, the desperation to cling to loyalty while running toward independence that sets the book apart. Book lovers will find Namey's story especially compelling because, in Darcy, they'll find a kindred spirit. Hand to fans of Cath Crowley's Words in Deep Blue (2017).--Molly Horan Copyright 2019 Booklist
From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Review by Publisher's Weekly Review
For years, 17-year-old Darcy, who seems to be white, has hidden her single mother's shopping and hoarding addictions from everyone except her Cuban/Mexican best friend, Marisol, and Marisol's brother, who does repairs in their chaotic San Diego apartment. Bent on keeping others out, Darcy has turned inward, burying herself in books, but the new apartment manager's plans for interior renovations forces her back to reality. Worried that she and her mother will have to move if the manager sees the state of their unit, Darcy must face the harsh truths about her mother's disorder, even as she experiences her first romantic feelings for a boy she meets at her local bookstore job. Bighearted Asher is open about the physical and emotional challenges he faces after a car accident, and Darcy seeks the courage to be as honest about her life. In this complex romance, debut author Namey paints a painfully realistic portrait of a teen playing an adult role in a dysfunctional family. Darcy's emergence from her protective shell of fictional characters and worlds creates an emotional journey. Featuring a strong supporting cast--including Darcy's boss, the owner of a wig shop--this compassionate, insightful novel will be relevant to anyone who has felt burdened by a secret. Ages 13--up. Agent: Natascha Morris, BookEnds Literary. (Oct.)
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Review by School Library Journal Review
Gr 9 Up--Darcy just has to hold on until her 18th birthday, when the state will no longer have the power to remove her from her home. Suffocated by her mother's hoarding and confronted by the possibility of others finding out, all Darcy can do is burrow into her books. Books, after all, are safe. Until Asher, who is recovering from a life-altering accident, enters the picture. Now, Darcy must decide whether to keep hiding between the pages of her book or take the risk of nonfiction by living life. This book is, first and foremost, a gentle love letter to books and book lovers. Through her story, Darcy articulates the importance and transcendence of words with which many readers will identify. With a number of strong themes, including the humanity and imperfection of parents, the trauma of having to grow up too fast, and what real love is, the storytelling is elevated by its thoughtful prose. Yet readers will be pleased to find a lack of melodrama, which is instead balanced and measured in ways that give the novel its intuitive sense of reality. Although the prose gives the book a more adult feel, Namey uses references and dialogue to keep Darcy's world otherwise relevant and contemporary. Readers will also enjoy Darcy's cast of family, friends, and classmates as people they recognize from their own lives. VERDICT For fans of Katie Cotugno, John Green, and Melina Marchetta, this will be a reader favorite.--Abby Hargreaves, District of Columbia Public Library
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Review by Kirkus Book Review
A sweet romance from a debut author to watch.Darcy Jane Wells works at a bookstore and likes to memorize lines from her favorite classics. Her friends are her beloved characters and her best friend, Mexican/Cuban American fashionista Marisol, who is the only one who knows Darcy's secrether mother is a hoarder. Brokenhearted and traumatized by the abandonment of Darcy's father, her mother is the image of perfection in public, but their small San Diego apartment is filled to the brim with her compulsive purchases. Darcy's only refuge is her bookshelf-covered room. With the help of Marisol, a used copy of Peter Pan, and an older boy struggling with his own trauma and illness, the linguistic savant begins to muddle through her senior year. Peppered with literary quotes and chapter headings, this novel will delight teen lit fans (mentions of YA faves abound). Taylor Namey's portrayal of mental illness is thoughtful and well executed, and the characterizations of even background characters are fully developed. The friendship between Darcy and Marisol is well balanced and charming, and the happy ending is swoonybut not overly so. The author sometimes relies too much on tropes (super self-aware teens, a mean-girl ex, a grumpy bookstore owner, and a boisterous Latinx family), but this doesn't detract from the feel-good narrative. Darcy and most characters appear to be white.A lovely tale for bookish readers that will give them all the feels. (Realistic fiction. 12-adult) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.
Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.