ARC Review: The Cousins

Milly, Aubrey, and Jonah Story are cousins, but they barely know each other, and they’ve never even met their grandmother. Rich and reclusive, she disinherited their parents before they were born. So when they each receive a letter inviting them to work at her island resort for the summer, they’re surprised… and curious.

Their parents are all clear on one point—not going is not an option. This could be the opportunity to get back into Grandmother’s good graces. But when the cousins arrive on the island, it’s immediately clear that she has different plans for them. And the longer they stay, the more they realize how mysterious—and dark—their family’s past is.

The entire Story family has secrets. Whatever pulled them apart years ago isn’t over—and this summer, the cousins will learn everything.

I said after reading McManus’s second book that she was going to become one of my favorite authors, and now after finishing her fourth novel, I stand by what I said. She is definitely one of my favorite authors and now my go-to for YA mysteries.

The Cousins follows Milly, Aubrey, and Jonah Story – cousins who barely know each other – and they’ve been invited out of the blue to work at their estranged grandmother’s island resort for the summer. Though surprised and apprehensive as to why she’s reaching out now, they’re also curious.

Besides, their parents aren’t giving them a choice: they’re going whether they want to or not. This could be their chance to get back into their mother’s good graces after she suddenly cut them off twenty-four years ago. But when the cousins arrive to the island, they realize that something is off, and that there might be more family secrets lying around than they ever imagined.

Like her other novels, McManus does not disappoint with keeping my mind on its toes, looking for clues to figure out the mystery myself. And even when I do figure out something, she immediately throws another twist at I never expected. The beginning starts slow, easing you into the Story family and a teeny bit of their history with one another, which allows you to invest in the characters more. But once the mystery starts, it’s one thing right after another… and I love it!

As usual, the story is told in the POV’s of the main characters – Milly, Aubrey, and Jonah – but there are a few chapters with flashbacks to Milly’s mother, Allison, that help tie the story together. I found it really worked with this particular story and enjoyed the flashback moments just as much as reading the POV’s of the cousins. It’s McManus’s style and way of telling a story that has me as one of her fans, and I look forward to more of her work coming (hopefully) soon!

With that said I completely enjoyed this book and my first thought after I finished was…

The Cousins comes out December 2020 and I highly recommend it to YA mystery fans. You don’t want to miss this gem of a book!

Rating: 5/5 stars

Thanks to NetGalley for a digital copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.

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