I had heard about The Cresswell Plot back when it was first published last year, and I didn’t really have the chance to read it, and I guess part of me forgot about it being on my to read list. But when I saw the absolutely gorgeous cover for the paperback version of the book, it sparked interest in the book all over again.
Usually I’m more of a fan of hardcovers than paperbacks, but in this case, I just can’t get over how beautifully designed the cover of the paperback version of this book is. The multi-colored leaves, the bird, and the tree all work together to make a stunning cover that is beautiful to look at and to display on your shelf.
Castella Cresswell and her siblings are different from the other teenagers at school. For one, they dress differently – plain, with clothes they either make or find in the woods. Second, they more or less keep to themselves. They don’t attend school events or participate in after school activities. Finally, they all live in a big house in the woods with their mother and father, who believe that this life is only temporary, and they are the only ones who will be going to Heaven.
“One day I wanted my life to be wide open. I wanted to live without a map. I wanted everything, even the road I was walking on, to disappear, so that for once I didn’t have to know where I was going.”
Although Castella has never been one to question her father’s beliefs and orders, when she meets George Gray, a normal enough boy who is assigned to be her partner in drama class, she begins to see that maybe the strict upbringing that she’s had isn’t actually the right way to live, but maybe, just maybe, there is more to life than praying and just waiting to go home to Heaven.
I’ve always liked books that deal with cults, and the Cresswell family is a sort of cult, really. It was so interesting to read about the Cresswell family and get lost in their world for a bit (even though it was a bit twisted!). I found myself really liking Castley’s character, as well as a few of the other Cresswell children, like Mortimer. The way they were written was perfect and they all had different personalities that really made the book come to life.
While some parts of this book weren’t really for the faint of heart (such as the fact that Castley’s father expected each of the kids to marry one of their brothers or sisters when they got to Heaven), this whole book is just addicting to read. Once I started reading, I seriously couldn’t stop.
This book really made me fall in love, and I’ll pretty much say that just about anything Eliza Wass writes from here on out is going on my must buy list.
The writing in this book is almost magical – the way things are described make you want to keep reading, while the pacing of the book is perfectly on point for the plot of the story.
The Cresswell Plot was one of the most creative books that I’ve read this year, and the writing was styled in such a way that kept me interested from beginning to end. I truly loved reading this book – it was a real treat.
Eliza Wass is an author, journalist and the wife of the late musician Alan Wass. Her debut novel, The Cresswell Plot, was published in 2016 to critical acclaim by Disney-Hyperion. She has contributed articles to The Guardian, Grazia, NME, Shortlist and THE FALL.
Her second book with Disney-Hyperion, The Life and Death Parade, will be published in June 2018.
3 winners will receive a finished copy of THE CRESSWELL PLOT Paperback, US Only.