Nov 182021

Publishers Weekly: McHugh’s gripping debut focuses on Jennifer Scarborough, who has been grooming her daughter, Abby, for media stardom for nearly 10 years. Since Abby was four, she has been photographed, videoed, and packaged under the name Chloe Cates in Jennifer’s popular blog, CC and Me. Jennifer, who cherishes her identity as a blogger and entrepreneur, won’t let anyone stand in the way of her dreams for her daughter—not even the girl herself. Meanwhile, 13-year-old Abby writes in her journal: “Everybody knows CC Spectacular, but Abby Scarborough doesn’t exist, not on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat—nowhere that counts… Who cares about me when Chloe is the star?” Chloe’s subsequent disappearance is national news, and the internet is fueled with viral hashtags like #CatchChloeCates trending on every major platform. Emilina Stone, the detective with the Children and Family Services Unit in Albany, N.Y., who’s assigned the case, declines to reveal to her superiors that she and Jennifer were childhood friends. Chapters told from multiple perspectives skillfully tease out the characters’ respective secrets to reveal the rage lurking beneath their smiling faces. McHugh is off to a strong start.