Sadie: Book and Podcast Review

Mackenzie White

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Horror movies are a genre of film that I’ve never been interested in, and probably never will be. The sheer terror and unease I feel when experiencing a thriller or horror is addictive, yet makes me afraid of everything seen or not in a 5- foot radius. Nonetheless, I’m semi-fascinated with murder mysteries. One of my favorite video series on YouTube is about unsolved murders–Buzzfeed Unsolved True Crime–and when I’m in the mood I always enjoy mystery novels as well. As tradition goes, since the month of October is known for the spooky things, I decided to read a very interesting novel called Sadie that caught my eye. The book checked the boxes for murder mystery, the 2019-2020 Read for a Lifetime list, and there is an adaption of the podcast in the book to an actual podcast that can be listened to on sites like Spotify.  Why not kill 4 birds with one stone? Plus, I get to enjoy myself reading a light and fun adventure about solving a mystery.

However, what I’d discovered destroyed my expectations. Sadie, written by Courtney Summers, is a book that contains two timelines. One timeline features a girl named Mattie who is found dead. Distraught over her death, Mattie’s older sister Sadie proceeds on a journey to find her younger sister’s killer. In the other timeline, Sadie ends up reported missing and spurs an investigation by West McCray, the host of a podcast, and he uses his podcast to document him following in Sadie’s footsteps to find her.

Before anyone reads this book, I would like to pull attention to the fact that this book deals with very, VERY heavy topics. The book doesn’t disclose graphic or descriptive information about the topics mentions, but trigger and content warnings for this book include these subjects: sexual assault, drug abuse, and domestic and child abuse. As I mentioned earlier, the author only mentions these topics in the most necessary ways possible, not giving any details, and this book is still categorized as YA.

Sadie is a book that I personally would tell anyone to read, no matter who they are or what preferences you have. Summers delves into the subject matter with the utmost want that people learn and for others to be able to know that they can safely share their own personal experiences and to let them know they aren’t alone with whatever is being dealt with.

An aspect of the story that emphasizes these ideas and brings the audience closer to the characters is the podcast. The voice acting accurately demonstrates the characters’ emotions, guiding the audience deeper into the story and really wanting to connect with them, and help them along their subsequent journeys. There aren’t too many episodes, considering how long regular podcasts last, and the media is very accessible, as I found it on Spotify. If you end up reading the book, which I highly recommend, I would also recommend you listen to the podcast.

Overall, Sadie was an amazing read with a powerful and inspirational message that helped open my eyes. I highly recommend this book to everyone.