“Crossed” by Evelyn Blackwell: Seriously Twisted and Scary – It’s Not Even Horror

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“Twenty-four years ago, we began our work together, drawing back the veil of ignorance that conceals the world’s cruelties. We hoped to inspire our audience to become less cruel, less harmful. This is not what has happened.”

Su lit a fire.
Rayen taught her friends how to kill.
Julia’s ex started an epidemic.
But the Crosses are greater than the sum of their parts.

Among the jaded youth, a new ideology is gaining popularity, one that poses a threat to all humanity.

The revolution will be global, panlingual, and single-mindedly merciless.

Crossed is a disturbing read. It’s a darn good one, too. The premise is almost absurd – generations under the thrall of a cartoon show about a turtle, Niri, who shows its viewers what’s happening to the environment. It’s a cartoon show! But it’s depressing. It’s – it’s… hair-raising.

I even cried when I read about Niri… Ugh, seriously. You have got to read this book. Through a series of letters, diary entries, judicial reports, and witness narratives, Blackwell shows a decaying world.

The year is mostly 2040, but there are flashbacks and more recent reports, with the world slowly being upturned by a generation so intent on preserving the planet, that they believe humans have to go extinct to undo the damage “we’ve” done to Mother Earth.

Many are extremists and some are terrorists. They call themselves the Crosses.

Characters

I don’t know what to say about the characters. This is one of those stories where the main character is the ideology or “the happening”. The rest of the people – “named” characters just serve to emphasize what happened. We see some growth – how they changed their minds, or how they evolved from skeptic to believer. But we don’t really see their lives. We don’t see their faces or their personality – like they didn’t exist before the cleansing happened – think of it like that movie “The Purge”.

With beliefs and ideas like extinctivism and Gaianism, Crossed will give you a different view of the world and the human race. And it’s not a happy one.

The idea is great, and the ending perhaps a little “okay”. Maybe it was just the optimist in me that wanted something more actively hopeful, but I’ll take it.

Published: June 25, 2015 | Amazon | Goodreads

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