Ivy Pochoda's new novel dives headfirst into the tragedy that erupts from a young girl's disappearance off the shore of Red Hook, a New York neighbourhood divided among the crime-riddled projects and the more stable Visitation Street. While June Giatto's youth and innocence add to the poignancy, a photo on a missing poster isn't the only memento left behind.
Also washed up onshore in the early hours of the morning after is Val Moreno, traumatised and clueless as to what could have happened to her best friend June. The resulting investigation stretches on for weeks before drying off in the peak of the suffocating summer months that follow during which time certain members of the community attempt to purge their own private ghosts. All the while, June's spirit refuses to leave Val's side, taunting her with the memory of a mistake.
Amid the mystery of June's vanishing, Pochoda also touches on the daily instances of racism, casual violence, and loneliness that plague both sides of the street. It isn't an easy scene to watch unfold, but one that keeps you watching regardless.