By Anne Cassidy
Published by Bloomsbury
ISBN 978 14048815526
Families can be messy things. Rose would love to belong to a boring yet stable family, but this is just a dream. There is no father on the scene, and her Mum has started a relationship with a man she met at work.
To make things even more complicated, Mum's new partner has a son called Joshua, who Rose feels attracted to. But Josh just looks on her as a new kid sister. Why isn't life simpler than this?
And just as things were beginning to settle down, something terrible happens. Her mum and her boyfriend, both police officers, go out for a meal one night and don't return home. They simply vanish off the face of the earth.
Rose has to move in with her grandmother while Josh moves away to study. Life just could not become messier. Or could it?
Anne Cassidy's Butterfly Grave is an edge-of-the seat thriller with great characters. Writers attempting "thrillers" for teen readers often write down to their readers.
But Cassidy respects and understands her fans too much to insult them with compromise. Her new novel would give any "adult" thriller a run for its money.
Rose and Joshua are bound together by the mysterious disappearance of their parents. After setting up this interesting relationship, Cassidy lets rip on a plot that is nail-bitingly addictive.
Just before Christmas, Joshua learns that his uncle Stuart, who lives alone in the North of England, has fallen from a cliff in a horrific accident.
Determined to discover what really happened, Josh and his friend Skeggsie travel north to visit Uncle Stu in hospital. They invite Rose to go with them. After all, she has nothing else to do during the holidays.
But things are uncomfortable between the teenagers as soon as they meet up. Josh acts strangely, convinced they are being followed. Rose withdraws more and more into herself as she thinks about her mother. And Skeggsie is resentful at being caught up in the middle.
Josh's Uncle Stuart has always been a bit of a mystery, and it quickly becomes obvious to the three teens that his fall from the cliff was not an accident. But why haven't the police picked up on this?
The three friends discover that Uncle Stu has a dark past possibly involving an unsolved murder. Was he also involved in the disappearance of Rose's mum and Joshua's dad?
Butterfly Grave is full of secrets, but when Cassidy reveals all at the end, no one will be disappointed. Here is great crime thriller that ticks all the boxes. Enjoy!
John Millen can be contacted on MillenBookshelf@aol.com