Updated: Sep 18, 2022
Have you read and enjoyed a CatholicTeenBooks novel? What did you like about it? Did you identify with one of the characters? Did the story theme speak to you? Did you enjoy the conflict, mystery, or something unique about the story?
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Let’s see what 14-year-old reader Felicity Astfalk thinks about Leslea Wahl’s contemporary mystery, Where You Lead:
Leslea Wahl has finally outdone herself with her thrilling and beguiling mystery of a novel Where You Lead. While sixteen-year-old Eve Donahue receives strange visions from God, inspiring her to prompt her parents to move to Washington, D.C., teenager Nick Hammond is also strangely encouraged to ask his father to run for Congress. Reaching their goals, the two meet in their new home: the capital of the U.S.A.
Eve and Nick, who is now the son of a U.S. senator, believe that God is calling them to work together to fulfill His will. But what exactly is His will? Searching for just that, the friends’ intrigue is sparked by the unsolved whispers of Confederate gold hidden nearby. As the two begin to unravel clues, it becomes startlingly apparent that someone else is out for the gold as well, and they’re not going to ask nicely for it either. Also, what of the suspicious residents at the U.S. embassy of Endelbourg? It seems as though they are out for the gold, too. Read to find out if Nick and Eve have the courage to fulfill God’s will amidst a blossoming romance and a twisted treasure hunt in their inspiring, rip roaring, and hugely satisfying book, Where You Lead.
Leslea Wahl’s YA novel of faith, mystery, and romance is not to disappoint. The characters are each unique, interesting, and relatable. Eve especially was very loveable with her bubbly demeanor and genuine love for others. It was also very nice to see the whole story play out amidst the dazzling setting of Washington, D.C. The characters were constantly visiting historic memorials and beautiful, famous sites such as the Rockefeller Center and the Smithsonian. It was so amazing to see Eve and Nick find clues to the treasure in these places, too, like a symbol on the wall or an inscription in an off-limits basement. The whole mystery had lots of twists and turns and loads of history intertwined since the gold was hidden by Confederates after the Civil War. The mystery’s historical depth and relation to real people and events was extremely impressive, considering the entire situation was a product of Leslea Wahl’s imagination.
And, amongst all this, the author still finds time for a charming romance and a valuable lesson for us all. The crushes Eve and Nick had on each other were really sweet, and they developed into a healthy, exemplary relationship. The lesson they taught us on their trying journey was also very valuable: trust in God’s will in big things and small, and have courage, for His way is best. The whole story hinged on the courage of Eve to move her family halfway across the country and that of Nick to bring his family into politics and follow God’s inner urges. In small things as well, Eve sees how she can follow God’s plan, like in being a friend to her lonely, elderly neighbor. That may be small, but it is equally important. Without a doubt, the depth, suspense, and intrigue of Where You Lead will leave you turning page after page.
The hugely satisfying story of Where You Lead was full of detail, action, mystery, romance, and faith from cover to cover. It is a story that all teens who love a good book should read. Don’t waste a moment: a whole world of excitement is waiting for you in this book; all you have to do is turn the first page.