2022 Book Review: The Cousins

The Cousins by Karen McManus

YA Mystery/Thriller, 2020 by Delacorte Press, 337 Pages 

What I Didn’t Like:

  • Slow start. This one takes awhile to get going. I wanted that mystery to be introduced right away and the small one just wasn’t enough to keep my interest. I wasn’t fully invested in the beginning. 
  • Plot holes. There are a lot of unanswered questions left in this one that push back at the validity of the big reveal. I’ll keep them to myself for now (spoilers) but if you’ve read this one I’m sure you have some of the same questions. 
  • Forced romance. The romance storyline didn’t work for me. It felt forced or convenient and not at all natural. Yawn. 

What I Did Like:

  • The premise has a lot of promise. Three teenagers head to an isolated island to meet up with relatives they haven’t ever met and unlock a decades old mystery. Great premise!
  • The pacing of the ending was good. Once you hit a point in this one you have to just keep reading to finish it. The twists start coming and it moves very quickly. I like that in a mystery book!
  • The characters aren’t all the same. There are flaws and individual traits that helped me keep them separate. That’s always good in a multi-POV book. 

Who Should Read This One:

  • If you’re a young adult who normally reads contemporary and you want to get into mysteries, this is a good one. There’s enough of the contemporary drama and intrigue to keep you going but the basic story is a mystery. 
  • It sounds strange but die-hard Scooby Doo fans might really like this one. I got a vibe. 

My Rating: 3 Stars

  • This one isn’t going to please the hardcore thriller fans at all, but it has a lot of good elements going for it that will work for sort of the cozy mystery crew.

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