Cassie McDowell’s life in 1980s Minnesota seems perfectly wholesome. She lives on a farm, loves school, and has a crush on the nicest boy in class. Yes, there are her parents’ strange parties and their parade of deviant guests, but she’s grown accustomed to them.
All that changes when someone comes hunting in Lilydale.
One by one, local boys go missing. One by one, they return changed—violent, moody, and withdrawn. What happened to them becomes the stuff of shocking rumors. The accusations of who’s responsible grow just as wild, and dangerous town secrets start to surface. Then Cassie’s own sister undergoes the dark change. If she is to survive, Cassie must find her way in an adult world where every sin is justified, and only the truth is unforgivable.
Whew, what a read!
I’m not entirely sure how I feel about the story; yes it was incredibly soulful, thoughtful and awful all at the same time. I think for me, the difficulty was because of what the children had to deal with. It wasn’t an easy, unemotional read, that’s for sure!
Perfectly written to encapsulate the 80’s era of what it was like to be a young teen during that time, I felt the story kept you hooked in all the right ways. In fact, I felt like I could have been Cassie riding my bike during the hot summer months to meet up with friends or investigate something that beyond my years. We all know we’ve been there!
Cassie, a young lady finding her way and her place in the world is stunted by the behavior of her parents who tell her not to say a word about what happens inside the walls of their house, or on their land. But when their parents mysterious parties shed light on what type of people her family associates with, it gets her thinking twice about what’s right and wrong.
As if that’s not enough to shake a young girl’s world, teen boys start to get abducted. They’re returned but never to be the same. Even being the outsider, not one of the cool kids, Cassie sets out to find out what’s really happening and starts with the list of party attendees.
Crossing each suspicious person off her list, she realizes that everyone has secrets and no one is what they seem. Confusing to a child, Cassie starts to understand that adults are way more than they seem and not one is without a dark spot in their past.
I loved that I kept right up with Cassie on her theories and was totally caught off guard when the story truly unfolded.
If you haven’t checked this book out yet, I highly recommend that you do! It’s a must READ!!