Review: Cryer’s Cross

The small town of Cryer’s Cross is rocked by tragedy when an unassuming freshman disappears without a trace. Kendall Fletcher wasn’t that friendly with the missing girl, but the angst wreaks havoc on her OCD-addled brain.

When a second student goes missing—someone close to Kendall’s heart—the community is in an uproar. Caught in a downward spiral of fear and anxiety, Kendall’s not sure she can hold it together. When she starts hearing the voices of the missing, calling out to her and pleading for help, she fears she’s losing her grip on reality. But when she finds messages scratched in a desk at school—messages that could only be from the missing student who used to sit there—Kendall decides that crazy or not, she’d never forgive herself if she didn’t act on her suspicions.

Something’s not right in Cryer’s Cross—and Kendall’s about to find out just how far the townspeople will go to keep their secrets buried.–From Amazon

I was excited to read Cryer’s Cross as part of the new Galley Grab program. I have heard so many people talk about how creepy and suspenseful it is, and I love the dark and eerie cover. Unfortunately, I’m going to be in the minority here. It didn’t love up to my expectations. The premise was interesting, but the execution disappointed me. Had this been a 20 minute Are You Afraid of the Dark? episode when I was younger, maybe it would have creeped me out. As it stands, though, this reminded me of when I first saw The Blair Witch Project; people told me it was terrifying, and I spent the entire movie waiting and waiting for something scary to happen. It never did.

The beginning of Cryer’s Cross is suspenseful as two students go missing from the tiny town without a trace. Then there are a couple hundred pages that felt like filler in which we learn about a new family in town, the main character’s OCD, and the unfortunate inability of the school’s soccer team to play without enough members. There’s some romantic tension between the MC and the new guy in town. In between, there are weird, short chapters that remind us that some people went missing and we should be wondering what happened to them, but the bulk of the action is unrelated. It felt to me like the book forgot what it was about, and then at the last minute, we return to find out the cause of the mysterious disappearances. The end was strange, but actually interesting, though it was somewhat predictable from the foreshadowing earlier in the book.

I had been planning to read the Wake, Fade, Gone series, but now I’m not so sure. I’m curious to hear from people who have read the older series and the new book to get an idea of whether I might like those better. Clearly this was not the right book for me. If you are planning to read it, though, I wouldn’t count it out yet because, like I said, I have read a lot of very positive reviews.

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