Crossing Over Review  

Posted by Scott Wilson

Crossing Over
Anna Kendall
ISBN 0575094265(978-057-509426-0)
RRP $29.99 August 2010
Gollancz Paperback (216 x 135)

Whether it's a curse or a blessing the fact remains: whenever Roger is in enough pain he can cross over to the Land of the Dead and speak to the people there. It's an unexpected gift - and one that, throughout Roger's life, his violent uncle has taken advantage of. Roger has been hauled from fairground to fairground and beaten into unconsciousness, in order to bring word of the dead to the recently bereaved.

It's a hard, painful way of life, deceiving the living for a crust of bread. So when Roger has the chance of a new life, it seems a gift. He has a chance at safety and at living a life of his choosing, tucked away in the royal court. But life is unexpected and when Roger falls in love with the bewitching, willful Lady Cecilia he has no idea what he is letting himself in for. With every step he takes towards her, he is drawn deeper into court intrigue, into politics and even into war...


Kendall draws the reader in with a unique medieval setting, different to many other fantasy worlds that we often see stories set in. Day to day life of the citizens in the world are more believable with often left our details like disease, bad food and foul odours.

The story follows a teenage boy with the ability to "cross over" into the land of the dead. Far from making him a superhero, this puts him in great danger as he becomes a pawn of progressively more and more powerful and ruthless people. The land of the dead is creepy, the characters are well-rounded (and sometimes also creepy), and the ending makes following the story all the way through.

Despite the general plot (a teen can cross over into the land of the dead), this does not feel at all like the typical teen paranormal fiction that floods the current market. For a first novel, Anna has done an excellent job of creating a new and refreshing story.

This entry was posted on Friday, August 6, 2010 at 4:43 AM . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .


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