Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Book Report: Cryer's Cross

Cryer's Cross

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Pre-Review Note: Lisa McMann is one of 33 awesome authors appearing at the Rochester Teen Book Festival on May 18!!! Pick up her books from the Wood Library Teen Scene.

Review Note: This review contains one big spoiler that is going to happen... NOW: haunted talking desk! 

If you were to tell me a week ago that I would make it through an entire book that centers around the idea of a talking desk possessed by ghosts, I wouldn't have believed you. "Oh, come on! That's too much," may have been my jaded response. But somehow, Lisa McMann pulls it off. At least, I think she pulls it off until we actually get to the talking desk in the last 1/4 of the book. Then I really had to strain to suspend my disbelief of haunted talking desks. (Shall we call them "HTD" from now on?)

The first 3/4 of the book are equal parts realistic, high school fiction and truly creepy thriller. McMann really does attain a nice balance between the two. Kendall, our teen protagonist, suffers from above average OCD. I haven't met too many fictional characters who admit to their OCD, so it was interesting for me to look in on Kendall's habits and coping mechanisms. I kind of enjoyed how most of the book was about her mental struggle, and I for sure enjoyed the unexpected, budding romance between Kendall and the new kid in a town of, like, 2 people. But wait: her best friend has mysteriously disappeared, her soccer team has dissolved, she probably won't get into Juilliard, and, oh by the way, A DESK IS TALKING TO HER! Is she going crazy? What are the voices trying to tell her? And is her BF Nico ever coming back?

I would recommend this to a reluctant reader in a heartbeat. The creepy is ever present and weirdly mysterious, and the narrative moves along at a clip. Nothing earth shattering for me, but I liked. -Kelley, (Your) Teen Services Librarian

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