Unexpected scenarios lead to unlikely heroines in The Crash by Lisa Drakeford


United By Pop received a free copy of The Crash in exchange for an honest review, all opinions are our own.

Title: The Crash

Author: Lisa Drakeford

Purchase: Available in the UK and the US

Overall rating: 3/5

Great for: Fans of E. Lockhart, Lisa Heathfield, and Cat Clarke

Themes: Young adult, coming-of-age, contemporary, thriller and mystery

The Crash by Lisa Drakeford

Review: Before a car careened its way through the wall of Sophie’s living room, she couldn’t imagine her life would entail anything more exciting than exam stress and boy drama. But, asides from living with the nightmare of seeing a smoking car filling the front of her house every time she closes her eyes, she now also has to cope with the probability of her best friend never waking up from a coma and her family’s daily increasing dysfunction.

But saviour comes in the unlikely form of Harry, the driver of the car that destroyed both her home and her life. Along with twin sister, Gemma, the blonde duo provide an enigmatic escape from the drama of Sophie’s daily life. Even if it is clear that they have their own secret demons to do battle with.

Thrown into the centre of the commotion, the reader is provided with no prior introduction to Sophie’s world before the arrival of the smoking car that destroys it. Without this initial breathing time, the beginning was as tense and fast-paced as the ending, meaning I flew through the entirety of this in one sleep-deprived, caffeine-fueled night!

Sophie’s story quickly transgressed into multiple mysteries and split-perspectives. This meant that I tore through chapters in the hopes of deciphering each of the character’s secrets before getting side-tracked by the introduction of a new one. Lisa Drakeford detained the reader from successfully resolving each of the questions that plague this book by constantly shifting perspective, blame, and focus. This was exquisite torture expertly done!

Of the characters this focuses on, each were as intriguing and interesting as the next. The aloof Gemma provided her portion in a sequence of flashbacks, leading up to the fateful crash. Her retiring brother, Harry, holds more keys to more secrets than he knows what to do with. Sophie’s neighbour, elusive eleven-year-old Issy, has her own troubles to focus on without realising she may be the only one to resolve those plaguing everyone around her. Tye, even in a coma Sophie is continuing to discover the true identity her best friend has been hiding. And then there is Deano: the shadow in the back seat and the individual that the fate of others revolve around.

With the multitude of characters each taking such a central focus, this could easily have been an overwhelming read. Lisa Drakeford managed to both overlap their stories whilst keeping the individuals separately confined. My favourite character proved the one the reader knows least about. Gemma’s troubles became the ones I was most eager to see a resolution to and, as such, it was her perspective I tore through this book to return to. Not to say I did not find the others as enjoyable, but her inner-thoughts seemed to hold a certain sparkle and authenticity I found especially captivating.

I appreciated that the majority of this book’s focus was dominated by the female characters. Each were witty, strong, and relatable. Each had their own problems and each sought a resolution to them. This shone a light on many real and heartbreaking scenarios that females have had to deal with and it seems crazy that they were all linked and ultimately solved by the uniquely absurd scenario of a careening car and a ruined residency.

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