Published by Disney-Hyperion on June 7th 2016
The woods were insane in the dark, terrifying and magical at the same time. But best of all were the stars, which trumpeted their light into the misty dark.
Castella Cresswell and her five siblings—Hannan, Caspar, Mortimer, Delvive, and Jerusalem—know what it’s like to be different. For years, their world has been confined to their ramshackle family home deep in the woods of upstate New York. They abide by the strict rule of God, whose messages come directly from their father.
Slowly, Castley and her siblings start to test the boundaries of the laws that bind them. But, at school, they’re still the freaks they’ve always been to the outside world. Marked by their plain clothing. Unexplained bruising. Utter isolation from their classmates. That is, until Castley is forced to partner with the totally irritating, totally normal George Gray, who offers her a glimpse of a life filled with freedom and choice.
Castley’s world rapidly expands beyond the woods she knows so well and the beliefs she once thought were the only truths. There is a future waiting for her if she can escape her father’s grasp, but Castley refuses to leave her siblings behind. Just as she begins to form a plan, her father makes a chilling announcement: the Cresswells will soon return to their home in heaven. With time running out on all of their lives, Castley must expose the depth of her father’s lies. The forest has buried the truth in darkness for far too long. Castley might be their last hope for salvation.
Hey bookworms! I am thrilled to be a part of The Cresswell Plot blog tour, hosted by the lovely Hannah @ Irish Banana Books! I’m doing a review for the blog tour, but there are lots of other people doing other creative posts to promote the book as well! I’ll have the their links down below. On with the review!
If you know me and you read this blog, you’ll know that I love cults. It’s a sick fascination, really. I could spend hours reading up on all kinds of creepy religious stuff. I’m not sure why I’m so obsessed with cults! Maybe it’s because I’ve had so much religious freedom in my Reform Jewish family? Who knows. Anyways, I’m always looking for more books with sick religious themes and this book nailed it.
This book made me feel so many things! I was scared, I was happy, I was hopeful, I was heartbroken, I was confused…any emotion you can name, I felt it while reading this book. Every single character had a huge impact on me and I even caught myself feeling sorry for the bad guys sometimes! In some of the final scenes View Spoiler »(like when they were hiding in the cave and Castella found the BONES) « Hide Spoiler, I was a complete mess. Seriously, I was screaming and sobbing and sending angry Snapchats to my friends saying “THIS DAMN BOOK!”
Castella’s religious journey was as heartbreaking as it was inspiring. She wasn’t like the typical person vs society type character. She didn’t start off hating her life. We got to journey with Castella and she lost her faith in her family, but also as she lost her faith in religion. It’s easy, especially for me, to be cynical about religion. But it is very important to a lot of people and proves devastating when that comfort is lost.
The romance was handled extremely well. I didn’t want them to end up together, so I’m thankful that they didn’t! George was perfect for Castella at the beginning. He showed her what the world was like and didn’t judge her. He slowly became worse and worse, and I’m glad Castella realized that. He served his purpose to help with her awakening and then slowly dipped out of her life.
The dynamic between Castella and her siblings was amazing. The amount of care and love that they had for each other made me envious. The fact they would LITERALLY take a bullet for one another shows how deeply they trust each other. Castella had a unique and interesting relationship with each sibling. The author did a fabulous job with the characterization of each child in the family.
I enjoyed this book a lot! It satisfied my craving for creepy religious books and made me feel ALL THE THINGS.