Original language: English
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary
Published: April 1st 2015 by Peachtree Publishers
Pages: 192 (hardcover)
Source: I received this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review
It's the summer before high school starts for Cass, Jemmie, Ben, and Justin, the neighborhood kids readers met in Crossing Jordan. Ben worries the break will be routine, until his little brother Cody finds a hat left by their missing uncle. The hat leads them to a lost house in the woods. They don't suspect the house with a tragic past might nudge them toward the future.
This is a DNF (Did-not-finish) review as I stopped reading this book at 42 %.
I must say I’m quite disappointed by this book. I expected it to bring some magical feeling with it and everything and make me believe that their summer was actually magical. But, well, it left me stone-cold. I wasn’t sure about the premise already but I thought it was worth a try.
And it probably was. After all, the writing style wasn’t actually that bad. It may not have been the best one but it was fun to read, but after a while not even a good writing style will keep you reading.
Something that annoyed me a little was that the point of view was constantly changing and that it was also mostly first person, so it got kind of confusing. (My indication for the point of view was always the name that they called Justin: Big, Jus or Justin)
But a good thing was that all the characters were on the same stage of development so the dialogue was pretty great and the relationships between the characters were also quite good.
But the characters themselves didn’t convince me: They were supposed to be in year 8 and Cody was about to go to year 2 but their ages didn’t fit. Sometimes the four of them acted like they were Cody’s age and acted completely irresponsible and sometimes they were like 16-year-olds with their relationships (Do you really think that much about kind-of-girlfriends and unanswered love in year 8??? Well, maybe I’m not normal, but I didn’t.)
Another thing was that they did not listen to each other. It made me want to bang my head against something. They did not respect each other or each other’s fears in any way, or to be more correct, they did not most of the time.
And the actual point why I stopped reading this book is the pace. It was so boring! I was at 40 % and there still wasn’t actually anything happening. I mean, 40 % is nearly 50 % which is half of the book. The story is set in seven days, the first week of summer holidays. And I felt like a lot of the actions were not that important for the plot. I don’t want to read a whole page about Cody eating a peanut butter-sandwich and worrying whether his mother will find out that he ate it on the couch.
So all in all: Read this, if you are up to something light, full of contemporary-fluff but don’t expect to be compelled by the story fast.