Genre: Young Adult Fiction, Contemporary, Mystery
Published: February 2, 2016 by: Kensington Books
Rating: 5/5 stars
*Thank you to Netgalley and Kensington Books for allowing me to receive this book in exchange for a honest review.*
Mercy Porter has been living in darkness ever since her sister Faith tragically drowned. Now three years later, Mercy wants to piece together what happened that fateful night, by interviewing a travelling band of gypsies who were accused of being involved in the death. However when Faith develops a love for one of the travellers Cross, she must find a way to hide from her strict pastor father who wants to drive the gypsies out of town, all while protecting herself and her younger sister Pru from Faith's bitter and alcoholic ex boyfriend, who will stop at nothing to torment the Porter girls for his girlfriend's fate.
This book was incredibly emotional and unique!! I absolutely love reading about travellers and gypsies, specifically in YA. I feel like their culture is so interesting, and it is something that never fails to spark my curiosity. This book contained heavy themes such as self-harm, family and abuse, but it also handled forbidden love in a perfect/non cheesy way.
Each character had their own special characteristics that added something to the book. I loved Mercy's determination, Pru's humour and confidence, and of course, Cross's kind and caring heart. Mercy broke my heart, the poor girl had been through so much, but she never failed to bring herself some closure. Strangely enough, I even had a great respect for her father by the end of the book. He cared for his daughters so much, and I loved how the author made him develop for the better.
The romance in this book was executed perfectly. Even though it revolves around a strong theme of forbidden love, it was handled in a way that wasn't unrealistic or even predictable. Cross and Mercy seemed like a real couple, they had their differences and their love developed slowly. Ugh, I could not handle Cross in this book, he was such a cutie.
I feel like this book also handled strong themes of diversity. Mercy's small Virginia town did not like the idea of the gypsies who came every summer. They called them slurs, and had prejudice towards them. However on the other side, the gypsies weren't too fond of the "settled" people either. I loved in the end how the two communities were able to join together and at least have some closure.
Overall, this book was so interesting, it was unpredictable, and the ending will put a smile on your face. It was filled with things that you would never expect, and the writing kept me wanting to read on. An amazing book!
Emily @ Paperback Princess