Friday 7 November 2014


Crossing by Catherine Norton (Omnibus Books)
PB RRP $16.99
ISBN 978-1-74299-028-6
Reviewed by Jenny Heslop

The world Cara has grown up in is unlike our world. It is a closed society with little freedoms, their city surrounded and isolated by a huge wall. Food shortages, high security and limited privacy are the norm for Cara although her family is afforded a few privileges as her parents are dedicated to the secret work of the National Security. While Lilith, Cara’s gifted younger sister, seems to be following in their parents footsteps, Cara is unsure of where life will take her but is content, comfortable even, and doesn’t really question how they live.
Then she meets siblings Ava and Leon. They feel differently about their existence in the shadow of the wall and cause Cara to begin to wonder about her parents’ views, the society in which she lives, and what life may be like beyond the wall.
Crossing is set in a dystopian society, a world of the future. But it is just as much about the past, an echo of historic East German society and the Berlin Wall.
It’s hard to do this book justice in a short review. This is a brilliant story about growing up, growing awareness of how the world operates, the struggle of torn loyalties between family and friends, and the importance of being true to one’s own feeling and values. This is a story which provides much to think about long after the pages have closed. It touches on many issues in a thought-provoking manner.
Crossing is a powerful story. The author has created a believable world and filled it with interesting and relatable people. Cara is a strong character, a young girl well on her way to becoming an independent woman. And her journey - along with Ava and Leon’s - is told in an engaging way. It is hard to put down. As a reader, I connected immediately and my emotional response was such that even though the ending is fully satisfying and completes the book, I was unwilling to let them go and would love to know what happens next.
I would highly recommend Crossing to both genders from twelve years and up, particularly those who love to read fantasy and dystopian novels.


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