Publication date: July 26th 2016
Devon is a gymnast and has been a gymnast probably since she was in her mother’s womb. Something as little as losing two of the toes on her right foot when she was a toddler wouldn’t and didn’t stop her and now, at fifteen, she’s ready to become a Senior Elite—the girls with a chance to go to the Olympics. She is the shining star at the center of Megan Abbott’s new thriller, You Will know Me. Devon isn’t on this journey alone. Her parents, Eric and Katie, have spent thousands of dollars and tens of thousands of hours supporting her and Coach T. is one of the finest coaches in the country. With their help and Devon’s laser focus and indomitable work ethic there is nothing stopping her.
Of course, this is Megan Abbott we’re talking about so it can’t all be sunshine and unicorns in You Will Know Me. Right before qualifiers, there is a death in this small gymnastic community. Coach T. is not coming in to the center, his niece—one of the coaches, is under investigation, and all the oh-so-supportive gymnastic moms at the club are circling like sharks. More importantly, there is no practice and the clock is ticking. Katie scrambles to try and keep her daughter’s dreams alive and hold her family together as secrets far beyond how to stick a landing are revealed.
By three-fourths of the way through You Will Know Me my heart is racing just like Abbott’s gymnasts waiting for their scores after an event. If nothing else (and there’s plenty else in this novel) Abbott gets inside in the head of every character she creates—be it cheerleaders, teenage girls, or, now, young gymnasts. With razor sharp writing, impeccable timing and more twists and turns than a Yurchenko vault You Will Know Me achieves something no longer found in the world of elite level gymnastics- a perfect 10 for execution.
This is what gymnastics did, though. It aged girls and kept them young forever at the same time.