On the way home from a high school football game, a masked gunman jumped onto the bus and opened fire, killing the cheerleading coach, BJ Remington, and injuring the star quarterback, Casio Hightower. Ten years later, Casio and his former girlfriend Claudia are still dealing with the aftermath of that terrible night. When Claudia's Assistant District Attorney husband reopens the case, the truth of what happened that night reopens old wounds that have never really healed. This is a good novel portraying characters suffering Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. They seem like real people with real problems, which you don't usually find in fictional novels. Casio has anger management problems as well as relationship problems, and Claudia suffers anxiety attacks and flashbacks. These are very real and common symptoms. The opening of each chapter where we hear BJ's dying thoughts are captivating. They may be the best part of the book. It held my attention right up until the end, and then somehow it fell flat. The solution was predictable and it seemed that most of it was wrapped up off-stage, if you will. But all in all, it was a good read, and I thought it was nice that at the end there was information regarding PTSD. 4 stars
My Review: When the students on a bus are witnesses to horrific murder in front of them on a school bus, it sticks with them. Now, many years later, when Claudia’s husband decides to look into the case, Claudia is torn up by the memories. It was a hard story, showing how trauma can effect people differently in their lives. As each character deals with solving the mystery of the murder, will it turn out to be one of themselves?
I enjoyed this story, but it was a little hard to get into to begin, but once you started, you finished it!
I generally like who dunnit books but this one was really hard for me to get into. I guess I'm just use to books that follow one or two characters. This book follows the story of four characters. It bounces so much between the four that it's really hard to get into it and I will admit, I've put this book down several times to read other books.
So, what's this book about? The book follows Claudia, Casio, Vic and BJ. Here's the weird part, in the beginning of the book we find out that BJ was killed by an unknown person on a bus that was filled with cheerlearders and football players. We also find out that BJ and Claudia were friends.
The book follows how that night has affected Claudia, Casio and Vic that happened 10 years previous. One of Claudia's friends, Casio, is a police officer who has major anger issues. Vic is the new ADA who wants to open the case to look into who killed BJ. Vic and Casio don't really get along since Claudia use to date Casio but are forced to work together on this case.
How does everything work out in the end? Who killed BJ?
Disclosure: I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review.
This has been a LONG time getting to the top of my too be read pile. I joined "Blogging For Books" last year some time in a hesitant start to this whole review blogging thing I'm doing. I waited, and waited for the book to come in, but it never showed up. Here now, with my resurgence of doing these reviews, I had them send me another copy so that I can finish what I started.
Claudia, Casio and the several other players and cheerleaders were on a bus back from a game when, while they were stopped for a train, a masked gunman boarded the bus taking the life of their cheer director and friend, BJ. Other than minor injuries, no one else was hurt except for BJ. The relationship between Claudia and her teacher had gone past the normal boundaries and they had become close friends. Flash forward 10 years, Claudia is still haunted by what happened on the bus, Casio, now a police officer, is having trouble with anger management. Claudia's husband is the ADA and has been given new evidence by Casio that gives him a reason to reopen the case to hopefully find the killer. Is there a killer on the loose? What is Claudia hiding and why doesn't she want the case reopened? Does Casio ever get help with his anger issue? READ THE BOOK!
This book was rather hard for me to get into, unfortunately. The book is basically written from the perspective of about 4 characters; BJ, Claudia, Vic and Casio. I guess I'm just a simple guy and having to read these perspectives was just a bit much for me. The plot was pretty straight-forward, although there were some side stories that I thought distracted from the main plot (the affair that Claudia's mother had). There are several underlying themes that were spelled out in the book; Spousal Abuse, infidelity, faith, etc. just to name a few.
So is this a "man's book"? I would have to say probably not. Not that I think all men are as easily confused as I am, but I would rather have a book that just tells the story. Having it told by different perspectives was a major turn off for me.
I really liked The Crossing by Serita Jakes. I especially liked Vic and Harper, so it made it difficult for me to connect deeply with Claudia and Casio. I did like them, but not as much as I did Vic and Harper. I also liked the flashbacks back to the bus. They weren't jarring at all. Although they were haunting, they were also necessary to understand the trauma Claudia and Casio lived through. I would definitely recommend this book. There was good tension in almost every scene. It also kept me asking questions throughout the book. Each scene ended with a hook that kept me wanting to read more. The book had surprises right up to the end. I'm looking forward to reading more books by Serita Jakes.
The book has an interesting premise: an unsolved murder of a teacher on a school bus. The murderer climbed aboard a bus and shot and killed a school teacher, injuring others as well. The students who survived were traumatized. The incident occurred in a small town, at a railroad crossing. Many of the high school students involved still live in town ten years later, trying desperately to put the past behind them. Unfortunately, that does not seem possible.
The book is pretty well-written, although I would have preferred a less pat and hurried ending. Although the resolution is plausible, it feels forced, almost as though Ms. Jakes realized she only had a few pages left to tell her story. I liked the book, overall. There were some characters that seemed extremely stereotypical, but others were well-developed. The idea that God can be working through the many persons in our lives – even those who are not Christians – is a positive one, and it is developed well, with a nice balance between faith-based and secular themes.
In the end, I would recommend the book to anyone who wanted a nice, clean mystery novel. It was not overly sweet or overly trite, although it was a little of both. With a more sedate and less sudden ending it would have been even better. I liked the premise, enjoyed the story, and cared little for the ending. I would have preferred some loose ends to the abrupt open and shut finale provided here.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255
The Crossing by Serita Jakes was far better than I expected. After the first chapter I wasn't convinced it was going to be interesting but the story took off from there. An excellent book that leaves you guessing. I couldn't put the book down, as Jakes created many twists in the story. This book has a few different story lines, so it could be confusing to figure out at first. Jakes did a wonderful job in weaving God's love into a story so full of pain. I will advise that this isn't a lighthearted novel in the least and does have some graphic parts to it. I will be interested in reading more from Serita Jakes in the future! “I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review”
The Crossing by Serita Jakes is an intriguing and captivating story from the minute you start reading it. I happen to love novels which are fast paced. This book does not disappoint.
However, it isn't a light hearted book. The premise is about teacher and cheer leading coach by the name of B.J. Remington who was shot and murdered on a bus after a football game. Unfortunately, the murder wasn't solved. So her close friend's husband (an ADA) decided to reopen the case after a decade to bring closure for his wife Cynthia (B.J.'s student and close friend). Cynthia witnessed the murder that fateful night and thus suffered from PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder) as a result. The twists and turns of this murder investigation and all the relationships involved was suspenseful to say the least. The book also addressed another important topic; domestic violence.
I have to admit that this book surprised me. I really didn't think I would like it as much as I did. I literally couldn't put the book down because I wanted to know what would happen next. However, reading this book left me somber and thinking deeply about things. I happened to relate and identify with things that happened to some of the characters in this book. So, it brought up a lot of "stuff" for me to sort through, process and come to terms with in my own life. Yes, this book is written as fiction, however, I believe it's based on real life scenarios which can't be ignored and swept under a rug, but addressed for what they really are. This story doesn't have a happy ending, which is true to life as well.
I highly recommend this riveting and thought provoking book. I commend First Lady Serita Jakes for her courage in writing such a creative, relevant and poignant novel.
In conclusion, I want to thank Waterbrook Multnomah Publishers for sending me this complimentary book and for the opportunity to review it.
The Crossing, by Serita Jakes, is a great story for all of those who have ever felt that they had to keep up appearances. While it is presented from many different points-of-view, it all begins to meld together as the book progresses.
The entire story hinges on the mystery of one night, when a gunman entered a stopped school bus and killed the cheerleading coach. Ten years later, Claudia Campbell is still dealing with the emotional fallout from that experience. Her husband, the ADA, reopens the case to find the murderer in an attempt to help his wife. Casio Hightower, also injured that fateful night, intends to assist Mr. Campbell in the investigation. As it turns out, they discover that many lives were forever changed by that one night.
This story includes mystery, suspense, marital issues, relationship difficulties, adultery, forgiveness, difficult choices, parent-child relationship issues, and much more. While it is a recommended read for adults or older teens, I would definitely hesitate to allow younger teens to read it due to the sexual situations included in the story. However, on the whole, it is a great story of love and forgiveness.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own
MY REVIEW This is the first book by Serita Jakes that I have read, and it certainly won't be the last. Written slightly different than any other I have read, it didn't take her long to have my undivided attention. The novel is divided into three parts with the verses of the Rock of Ages hymn preceeding them. It is written in the third person point of view, with headings to keep the reader in the loop as to whose thoughts and actions we are privy to at this moment. Claudia and her husband Victor, as well as a classmate of Claudia's are the main characters. BJ Remington, the cheerleading teacher who was murdered on the bus surrounded by her students and the football team makes her appearance in her thoughts immediately after the shooting, and until she dies. Although I was not sure I would appreciate this approach, Serita handled it very well without making it an element of paranormal.
Although not an extremely emotional story, the reader is drawn into the characters' lives with words drawing rich pictures of the relationships between parents and children, husband and wife, peers who have been touched by the same incident. Through it all PTSD is explored and faced.
This novel opened my eyes to the effects of PTSD and how it can affect those around them.
i received this book free from WaterbrookMultnomah Publishers through their Blogging For Books program, in exchange for an honest review. I was not required to give a positive one. The opinions expressed are my own.
I have always enjoyed a good mystery. I wasn't sure what to expect when I picked this book because I had never heard of this author. I was very surprised that the story had just enough detail and was easy to follow. I was also blown away by the twists and turns that were a part of this story. The unexpectedness ALWAYS makes the mysteries and this story kept you guessing until the end!! Another thing that I really liked about this book was how the author tied in the importance of a relationship with God and the importance of prayer. The characters in this story were far from perfect, but showed humility in seeking out a personal relationship with Christ.
In this story, there are several characters who witnessed a brutal murder of a high school teacher/coach. This teacher was highly respected amoung her students and when she was murdered and the killer never caught it left several students with a haunting past. 10 years later, an ADA decides to reopen the case to help those put their fears to rest.
This book was a pretty quick read, and I'm ready to read some more books written by this author to see if they are also as captivating as The Crossing.
I received this book for free from Waterbrook Multnomah for this review.
Ten years have passed since BJ Remington was murdered on a school bus full of high school athletes, but the repercussions of that day still haunt some.
Claudia Campbell is caught in a re-occurring nightmare from that day. The nightmares began to affect Claudia’s daily life two years ago when she miscarried. Claudia is driving her family into financial ruin with her constant spending. Claudia’s husband Vic is determined to save both Claudia and their marriage from the quagmire Claudia is drowning in, but can he discover the truth in time?
Casio Hightower was headed to a career in the NFL until that night ten years ago when he was shot and his dreams shattered. He is taking his anger and despair out on his girlfriend Harper Abott. But when he takes his anger too far and physically assaults her, he could loss everything. Can Casio mend his ways or will he continue to blame Harper for his abuse?
When Casio finagles his way into Victor’s investigation he little realizes that he is closer to the killer than anyone ever believed. Lies have warped and distorted the lives of everyone involved in ways that they never could have imagined.
The old statement about tangled webs being weaved when we deceive is so true where The Crossing is concerned. Pre-marital relations, extra-marital relations, lust, greed, selfishness, abuse are all the fruit of deceit and when these seeds are sown everyone around us suffers for it.
The Crossing was well written, but I can honestly say I would not want to live in their city!
The story switches back and forth between BJ Remington’s final thoughts and the actions of those around her and the lives of these same people today and the issues they are facing.
I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review
The Crossing, by Serita Jakes, takes you into the lives of Claudia, Casio and other students who were involved in a tragic shooting on a school bus ten years ago. The cheerleading coach and teacher, whom Claudia was very close to, is murdered by a masked gunman, and 10 years later, the case is still unsolved.
Most of the book is set in current time (10 years after the incident), but includes frequent flashbacks to the shooting, including from the perspective of the cheerleading coach as she lays dying.
There is a lot going on in this book and it is sometimes difficult to keep track of it all. The story moves quickly, jumps around to various characters, and seems to leave out some important details. Claudia is dealing with a lot at once - financial troubles, marriage difficulties, depression, flashbacks to 10 years ago, and new information about her parents that changes her perspective of their marriage and ministry. Claudia's husband is an assistant district attorney who decides to re-open the case, in part to help bring closure for his wife. He quickly discovers that some key evidence and information has been withheld. This makes some people in town uncomfortable and creates some unexpected turns in the story.
I didn't enjoy this book as much as I thought I would, and had a hard time getting into it. It is a good story, just not quite my style.
You can read an excerpt of Chapter 1 at http://www.scribd.com/doc/58109101/The-Crossing-by-Serita-Ann-Jakes-ch-1-excerpt.
I received an Advance Reading Copy of this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review.
I was captured by this novel. Ten years ago a school bus was stopped at a railroad crossing. On board was a Texas football team, cheerleaders and staff returning from a game. A masked gunman entered the waiting bus and murdered the cheerleading coach and wounded a student. The cheerleading coach was young, just out of college. Claudia had become her good friend in the short time the spirited teacher had been there. Claudia held her dear friend as the life seeped out of her. Go forward ten years. Claudia is married to the assistant DA and has a young daughter. Claudia still gets panic attacks, never having resolved the deadly scene. Her husband decides to help Claudia by reopening the case, as the murderer had never been identified and arrested. As he begins to interview people and poke into some new places, Claudia can't stand it and threatens to leave. As we experience the investigation into the old murder, we also get glimpses into the thoughts and feelings of the dying teacher. It becomes clear that evidence was suppressed, the autopsy was rigged, and some important people had never been interviewed.
Jakes has created a very good novel. It captured me at the beginning and was a page turner to the end. I read the entire book in a day (retirement is wonderful). The way the truth of that day ten years ago was revealed is clever and very well done. The struggles the survivors were still experiencing were real. Several characters in the book are Christians and the way they lived out their faith, doubts and all, was well done.
For a debut, this is a great novel.
I received a free copy of this book from WaterBrook Publishers for the purpose of this review.
The Crossing is a wonderful Christian fiction mystery. I absolutely loved this book because I just couldn't stop reading! I was captivated by Serita Jakes novel from the moment I picked up the book. Ten years prior to the present day, a gunman boarded the high school bus at a railroad crossing and killed the cheer leading coach BJ. Claudia Campbell was with BJ til the moment she died and has panic attacks from the memories. Her husband, Victor, is the assistant DA for the small town in Texas. He reopens the case to try to find the man who murdered his wife's best friend. Casio was the star football player on the high school team, he was also shot in the arm by the gunman but the wound wasn't fatal. He joins Victor to solve the case to find the man who ruined his career as a football player. I would recommend this book to anyone who loves a good mystery!
As a Christian counselor, I wanted to see how PTSD was treated. The capturing of the symptoms and the recognition that counseling would help was great to see in a Christian format. I couldn't put it down until I finished it. All will be blessed in the reading of it and seeing God's hand to the end.
This is a novel about the repercussions of a selfish act and the victims who are left behind to remember it. Claudia is having trouble letting go of a murder that has haunted her for the last 10 yrs, her husband Vic is trying to make sense of everything that has transpired. Casio Hightower whose rage hurts the ones he cares for most, his regrets become his shame. Like Claudia, he too has memories of that fateful evening when the shooting took his heart from him. The question is: Will the murderer be found and brought to justice? Going from past to present the author ties the novel together. A satisfying suspenseful read with a creative twist ending. Good character development, scenery and dialogue keep you reading. Although the book has an overall inspiring message, I was hoping for more faith with the characters. I received this book for free from Waterbrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review.
Ten years has passed and the tragedy of a shooting is as real to today to those who experienced as it was then. A gunman takes a life and by all appearances, life doesn't just carry on. We see the scars that are left behind and we ride this journey with these characters fighting to find today. But the case is now being reopened after all these years.
Betrayal is alive in this book. We have murder, suspense and the seeking of the truth, but there are so many secrets to be uncovered. We see just how are demons can keep us from really living in God's abundant grace. Faith is something that I expected more of in this book by Serita Jakes. I would say this book is more secular than Christian.
I must say this book didn't really grab my attention. I wanted to enjoy it, but it just didn't happen for me. You may pick up this book and totally love it. For me, it was just missing what I look for the most in a Christian novel. Faith.
This book was a gift from WaterBrook Press for it's review.
The Crossing finds Claudia at the train track and a train was coming, she was the first one in line near the track but from old memories she freezes. Even after the train had gone by she just sit there while the other cars went around her. Officer Casio Hightower knew her as he was on the same bus the day the shooter got on and started to shoot. That is what she was rememering, that day, she was so scared as he got on and shot BJ one of her friends. She was a cheeerleader at her school and it had been ten years. They had never found the killer and it was time to try to find him so that they all could get these memories eased. As the story progressed it got into the things that had happened and the things that are happened present day. This is really a mystery that keeps you wanting to just keep turning pages so you can see what the next page brings.
Thanks so much to WaterBrook Press for sending me this book for my review.
This was an interesting story about the effects of PTSD and what could potentially happen if you don't deal with it. When a group of high school students were on their way home from a football game, a masked gunman entered the bus and shot 3 people killing one of the teachers on board. The murder was never solved and when the case is re-opened 10 years later, it causes emotions to roll. The only part that seemed unbelievable to me was the fact that the high-profile preachers daughter would not have received counseling after such a traumatic experience. This story was well done and is a real eye-opener to the effects of traumatic experiences when they are not dealt with.
I received this book for free from blogging for books in exchange for my review.