Lana used to know what was real.
That was before when her life was small and quiet.
Her golden step-brother, Ben, was alive, she could only dream about bonfiring with the populars, their wooded island home was idyllic, she could tell the truth from lies, and Ben’s childhood stories were firmly in her imagination.
Then came after.
After has Lana boldly kissing her crush, jumping into the water from too high up, and living with nerve and mischief. But after also has horrors, deaths that only make sense in fairy tales, and terrors from a past Lana thought long forgotten: Love, blood, and murder.
I loved The Creeping gave it five stars. I was disappointed in this novel. The mc, Lana was dull and her inner thoughts didn't make me interested in her. In fact I was more interested in the side character Car than anyone else and didn't get enough about her.
The book starts out with a bunch of kids drinking at a swimming hole, I can count at least five novels I've read recently that either started this way or had a similar scene, so apparently it's becoming a new YA trope. I maybe did something similar once or twice as a teen, but never some super special "secret" spot adults didn't got to.
It was hard for me to relate to the characters because they were pretty much all either a) mean b) super popular c)genius level smart d) really rich or e) dead f) all of thee above.
I had HUGE issues with how the cops treated the kids in this novel. No cop interviews a kid, especially a rich kid, without a lawyer or a cps worker with them. Not without some conversation about rights waiving. Nor does the main detective involved info dump on a 17 year old girl all the garbage they dug up about a possible suspect or victim.
The dark stories from Lana's step-brother Ben were interesting, a little creepy and creative. Lana's relationship with Ben was also a high light of the story, however I guessed the twist pretty early in, which was disappointing. Though, Lana is at her most interesting when she has less than charitable thoughts towards the asswipes (her new current friends) who used to bully her.
There is some interesting stuff in here about how mean kids can be to each other, Lana get's hard core bullied. My issue, as a girl who was bullied pretty badly... I could NEVER be friends with the girls who said hateful mean things to me...Pretend to be nice for a little while sure, but like my new best friends? Not unless they apologized and ate some SERIOUS crow. (Which these people did not.) There are still girls who could be on fire on the side of the road that I would drive by and not feel bad about.
The writing was good, and when the novel finally picked up, around half way through, I did enjoy it more and couldn't put it down. I would still read a third book by this author, but this was sad in comparison to her last novel.