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Set You Free by Jeff Ross
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Set You Free

by Jeff Ross

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This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
This is my review of Set You Free by Jeff Ross. I was lucky enough to have received an ARC of this book, but unfortunately due to busy schedule and not knowing where to start, as I have never really professionally written a review nor have I had an ARC before, I only got to writing the review as of now. Anyhow, I hope to learn from this experience and better myself. So here goes my thoughts.
Set You Free by Jeff Ross was a good, quick read (if you aren’t taking notes every five seconds) that details the story of a girl named Lauren who’s babysitting charge, who happens to be the mayor’s son, has been kidnapped. The town and police begin to believe that it was Lauren’s brother, Tom. However, Lauren knows better and sets off with Tom’s friend, Grady, to figure out the truth about what happened to Sam, the mayor’s son.
To start off, on my copy of the book, it says 12+ on the back which I think was incorrectly labelled. Not that I don’t think 12 year olds could handle this, but due to vulgar themes and language and some violence, I would suggest labelling it as 14+ at the very least. When I was a 12 year old, I would have found this novel very not good and felt like I need to hide from my parents that I was reading it, or I wouldn’t really be able to understand a lot of these terms.
Next thing I want to talk about is Detective Evans. Yikes. She is such a typical cop character from a horrible cop show people only watch to laugh about. She repeatedly, within the same paragraph, would pull on her sunglasses, then take them off. On, off, on, off, on, off. It was giving me a headache. And then she would have those brooding moments where we would rarely get told what she was even thinking about, which I personally don’t enjoy. And lastly, although it is actually kind of important to the whole story and it just kind of irked me, she checked her phone every two seconds. It drove me mad. Looking through my notes, I even found a bullet point that says “Detective Evans is a jerk.” Needless to say, Detective Evans was definitely not a favorite of mine.
My last complaint is I felt kind out of the loop. Whenever they were talking about the building, or the mayor’s brother, I just got so lost and confused and it made it hard for me to catch myself and find out what was happening. It was just too much information coming out of random places that it was too hard for me to keep up.
Now onto what I like about this book! This was very good plot and the plot twist at the end really got me, despite me being able to predict the majority of what happened everywhere else. I was completely thrown for a loop and I loved every second of it. You either know this from the beginning, or you are like me and just are completely blindsided (in a good way.)
Also, I read a bit of what Orca’s (the publisher) about and this is definitely a good, fast-paced novel that’s fantastic for younger or newer readers. It’s fairly easy to understand at most parts, the writing style is great, and it’s quick so you don’t feel daunted. Definitely recommend for newer or younger readers, not that older or more advanced readers shouldn’t read it either.
Lastly, Jeff Ross has a very unique voice which I found very prominent throughout this novel. The characters all spoke in a very individually way, which made for good character individuality and made Ross’s writing skills stand out. I believe the book was very well written and easy to read. I would definitely read another of Ross’s novels.
I rated this book a 3.5/5 stars. ( )
  BooksWithABrunette | May 21, 2016 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
The mayor's son is missing. Lauren babysits Ben. Her brother quickly becomes a suspect. Lauren teams up with her brother's best friend, Grady. Together they try to come up with other suspects. They focus on the mayor's family. This was a pretty fast moving book. Lauren and Grady were likable. Grady is pretty handy with computers and finding information he shouldn't be able to find. I often wonder how much of that could actually happen, but I'm ok with stepping out of reality and believing it for the sake of a story if I like the plot and the characters, which I did. The ending was very unexpected, which for me and a mystery, makes it a very good read. ( )
  catzteach | Mar 13, 2016 |
When the mayor's six-year-old son vanishes, Lauren vows to keep her brother's secrets. Tom is well-known for his previous attempt to lure a child into the woods, but Lauren is determined to prove he had nothing to do with little Ben Carter's disappearance. When new information reveals Tom may not be as innocent as she thought, Lauren teams with Tom's friend, a computer hacker, to send the police down a different path. ( )
  ShellyPYA | Jan 25, 2016 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
SET YOU FREE by Jeff Ross is a YA thriller that takes place over the course of a week or so.

In the book, Benjamin Carter, the five-year-old son of the mayor of Resurrection Falls, is missing. Benjamin's beloved babysitter, Lauren, was one of the last people to see the little boy, and Lauren's brother, Tom, is a primary suspect in Benjamin's disappearance.

The pace of the book is excellent. Ross kept me turning pages as I tried to figure out what plot twist could possibly come next. His style is perfect for the book; he writes clean, descriptive sentences and he doesn't waste words.

That said, this book annoyed me for many reasons. The characters lacked depth--although there were plenty of unexplored relationships and story lines that could have improved the book immensely. There were also some inconsistencies and a few events that were supposed to propel the story and instead left me shaking my head at their inclusion in the book.

I give the book three stars for its potential and because I kept reading it and even made time to do so. I was tempted to drop it to two stars because of the lack of character development and the sometimes implausible leaps made by the author to get from one point in the book to another.

My thanks to the publisher and LibraryThing for a free copy of the book in exchange for my honest review. ( )
  kalky | Oct 14, 2015 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I enjoyed the beginning of this book- the plot seemed believable and I enjoyed the dynamics between the characters. But the "surprise" ending wasn't set up at all- felt a little cheated. ( )
  kimpiddington | Oct 11, 2015 |
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The six-year old son of the mayor is missing and Lauren's brother Tom, is the main suspect. To the people of Resurrection Falls, Tom is the freak who once tried to lure a kid into the woods. If Tom is innocent, why has he vanished? Lauren is determined to uncover the truth.… (more)

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