Age Range
Release Date
March 08, 2016
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What if you discovered that Kurt Cobain is not only alive, but might be your real father? Nicola Cavan has been an outsider since age four when her mother vanished from their West Coast home. Now 15, Nico is determined to find her beautiful, music-obsessed mother. After glimpsing “Cobain” on a ferry from Seattle, Nico follows the man with the blazing blue eyes to a remote Vancouver Island cabin—and life will never be the same. “Save Me, Kurt Cobain is: Utterly gorgeous. Mesmerizing. Hypnotic. … I love this book.” – Jennifer Niven, New York Times bestselling author of All the Bright Places “Raw and authentic.” – Jennifer Mathieu, author of The Truth About Alice and Devoted A nuanced and bittersweet YA debut that will keep you guessing until the end.

Editor review

1 review
Save Me, Kurt Cobain
(Updated: March 20, 2016)
Overall rating
Writing Style
When Nicola, 'Nico' Cavan was four years old, her mother left and promised that she'd return. Only she didn't. Now fifteen, Nico finds something that links her missing mother to grunge star Kurt Cobain. She thinks he's her father and when she returns from a trip to Seattle, she feels she's found him. Alive. What happens next leads Nico to finding out the truth, no matter the risk.

What worked: I loved the voice of this contemporary novel where Nico longs to know what happened to her missing mother. The pain of that lost haunts her. One way she deals is through her retro music and by trying to be invisible at her high school. So when she thinks she finds a possible link to her mother's past? She goes after it, no matter how impulsive and dangerous it is.

The underlining little known facts on Kurt Cobain's life add to the story. Nico is almost obsessive when it comes to Nirvana and the lead singer. I think this shows readers her personally and how driven she is to find the truth about her mother.

The story really picks up once Nico thinks she sees Cobain. Her decision to follow him is impulsive and risky. It also brings her out of her protective shell. Before she'd been willing to just 'hang' with her BFF Obe and listen to Nirvana but now that she actually thinks Cobain might in fact not only be alive but her father? She makes a choice that arcs her as a character at the end. It also shows her inner strength and courage.

There are hints of a romance when she's on the ferry going over to Seattle. I wanted to see more interaction with Sean. There is one scene when they are in Seattle but that was only a taste. And finally I wanted to know how a certain character knew as much as he did about her mother's BFF.

This novel is much more than a coming of age story about an obsessed fan but rather more about a girl searching for answers and going after them. There's suspense, mystery, hints of romance that blend together into one satisfying conclusion. Manzer does a great job of showing the flaws, quirks of not only Cobain but Nico as well.
Good Points
1. Suspense, mystery, hints of romance blend together into one honest tale.
2. Coming of age novel
4. Manzer does a great job of blending non-fiction facts of Kurt Corbain's life into storyline
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