Welcome to the blog tour for Drowning by Steven M. Cross! Read on for an exclusive excerpt and more details!
Genre: Young Adult/ Contemporary
Publication Date: October 29th, 2019
Publisher: Liminal Books
Dean knows being different isn’t always a good thing.
Trapped by the voices and visits from the dead, Dean is drowning. His father, allegedly drowned, and the friend who took his own life taunt like the school bullies he can’t seem to get away from.
A sliver of hope breaks through when his mother announces they are moving. A chance for a fresh start for all of them. So why does she move them to the cottage near the river his father drowned in?
The water begins to envelop him, threatening to pull him under, when Dean discovers nothing changes and the bullies find not only him, but his twin sister, Dee, as favorite targets. Dean’s personal struggles worsen as his tentative grasp on reality weakens.
An unexpected hand plunges through the water toward him, bringing with it questions and a family secret that haunts them all.
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My Review of Drowning
Steven Cross offers up a chilling look into teenage mental illness in the YA drama Drowning. I am truthfully having a hard time coming up with words that can describe my feelings about the novel.
As many of you know, I live with mental illness. My own and the various illnesses of my children. It is a hard road to walk and one that I would not wish on another soul for as long as I live. The way Steven talks about mental illness and the bullying, confusion, self-loathing, and full out anger at the world is nothing short of brilliant.
I assume that Cross is discussing the problems of mental illness in society today. Still, I must tell you that these same tactics have repeated throughout history. Unfortunately, in those days, it was just kids being kids, and there is more emphasis on zero-tolerance policies and all that crap. It is nothing more than history repeating itself generation after generation with no end in sight.
The way that Dean and Dee make it through in their own way with a dead father and a neglectful mother is astounding to me. The way that they fight with all their might to battle the demons within with nothing more than their own wits saddens me, but at the same time makes me admire them, even respect them.
Without giving away the entire plot, I cannot go on. Just know, Mr. Cross, that this novel has moved me. I will continue the fight where Dean and Dee couldn’t.
That being said, I award Drowning a full 5 out of 5 stars. I can’t force all of you out there to read this book, but please, for the sake of our children, give this book a read.
My dad looks up at me, “I’ll catch you.”
I know he probably won’t, but that doesn’t scare me, not today. What scares me is knowing that this day—this perfect day—one of the few my family ever has will end soon, and it will be back to yelling and screaming and being slapped for saying the wrong thing even when I don’t know what is wrong.
I turn to Dee and ask, “What do you want to be when you grow up?”
“I don’t ever want to grow up,” she says.
And I realize I don’t want to either. I back away from the cliff.
Dee says, “Finally. Don’t kill yourself.”
“I don’t want to grow up either.”
I run to the edge of the cliff, but this time I don’t jump feet first. I dive. I think as I sail through the air and hit the water that it’s the perfect day to die.
My dad jerks me out of the water. “What the hell are you doing? You could have killed yourself.”
I just look at him and say, “I didn’t.” Then, I swim toward the beach.
Dee yells, “Holy shit, brother! Way to go.”
Drowning is Available on Amazon!
About the Author
Steven Cross remembers his first literary success, a play about a wolfman that his English class read. His first publication was a Haiku about hearing wolves at sunset one evening as he sat on his back deck with Luke his faithful mutt by his side. He also published a horror story about mutant moles whose taste buds begin to crave human flesh.
Cross, born in Missouri, has published plays, novels, and poetry and done well in some screenwriting competitions, most recently as a quarterfinalist in The Bluecat Screenwriting competition, considered one of the best in the country.
Cross often writes about mental illness. He is an example of how a person can overcome mental illness and succeed. His young adult book Drowning covers bullying and mental illness and is a must-read for teenagers, parents, and teachers.
An educator for over 30 years, he is now semi-retired. Right now he and his wife Jean live in Poplar Bluff, MO, where they spend a lot of time spoiling their grandchildren. Cross is a St. Louis Cardinals fan and has been ever since he was old enough to hold a baseball card. He also enjoys music, reading, and of course writing.
Blog Tour Schedule
Reads & Reels (Spotlight) http://readsandreels.com
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I Love Books and Stuff (Spotlight) https://ilovebooksandstuffblog.wordpress.com
The Faerie Review (Review) http://www.thefaeriereview.com
The Magic of Wor(l)ds (Interview) http://themagicofworlds.wordpress.com
Tranquil Dreams (Spotlight) https://klling.wordpress.com/
Banshee Irish Horror Blog (Spotlight) www.bansheeirishhorrorblog.com
Didi Oviatt (Spotlight) https://didioviatt.wordpress.com
Misty’s Book Space (Spotlight) http://mistysbookspace.wordpress.com
My Bookish Bliss (Review) http://mybookishbliss.com
Dash Fan Book Reviews (Spotlight) https://dashfan81.blogspot.com/
J Bronder Book Reviews (Review) https://jbronderbookreviews.com/
Entertainingly Nerdy (Review) https://www.entertaininglynerdy.com
Phantom of the Library (Review) https://phantomofthelibrary.com/
Crossroad Reviews (Spotlight) http://www.crossroadreviews.com
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