Criss Cross

A Holly Novel

Christian - Fiction
370 Pages
Reviewed on 11/05/2017
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Author Biography

I have loved writing since I was a little girl. In fact, my first books created were hand-written school books (of course I pretended to be the teacher), followed by short stories and poems. Criss Cross: A Holly Novel may not be my first book, but it’s the first one I decided to publish, with the love and encouragement of my amazing husband. It’s the first in a series.
I read a wide array of books. Sometimes I just want something cozy that makes me laugh, but more often than not I prefer crime novels. I quickly learned that most crime novels are full of swearing and too-graphic scenes that left me feeling a little queasy (and let’s be honest, who wants to read a book that makes you feel like up-chucking? Just turn on the news). When I decided to write my own crime novel, I wanted it to reflect the real world, in all its hardships and pain, but with God smack in the middle. And because I look for humor anywhere I can find it in this world, I peppered Holly’s world with it, too. Writing this series is an exciting journey with my husband, and I hope others enjoy it, too.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Robin Goodfellow for Readers' Favorite

Criss Cross by C.C. Warrens is a Christian thriller about remembering what evil has taken away, and knowing that, in the end, you’ve always a home you can go back to. Detective Richard Marx is investigating the death of two men, both of whom are connected to the attempted assault of a young woman named Holly Smith. Now, with a sadistic stalker on the loose, Richard must protect Holly with everything he has, even if it means giving up his own life. Holly, meanwhile, is a freelance photographer who can’t remember anything from her childhood. When a card shows up at her door, asking her to come home, she dismisses it. However, after a series of frightening events, Holly finally realizes that she is in more danger than she realizes, and that the only thing she can do to save herself is remember. C.C. Warrens shows that, though the demons from a nightmare may be lurking in the shadows, having courage and faith can light up even the darkest of places.

There’s no doubt that Holly is haunted by forgotten memories. To be honest, I’m amazed Holly can still function as well as she does. Not only that, but when she does finally stop running, it’s clear that she will do whatever it takes to protect her friends and survive. Her practice of writing down one thing she’s thankful to God for helped keep her sanity as well, preventing her from drifting off into despair. Her faith also stemmed from the unlikeliest of places; a ruined childhood, a stolen Bible, and a refusal to give up on life. I loved this part of her character, because it illustrates that even while Holly knows that she’s suffering, she endeavors to endure, if only to reclaim her life.

This brings me to the concept of having faith in God, even in the most troubled of times. Holly was innocent in all of this; the only survivor of her family’s massacre. With only fragments of her memories left to her, she managed to pull herself together to try to live. She was trampled on, abused, drifting from foster home to foster home, but she still pulled through. In God, she was strong, and for that I commend her. With each memory that returned, the story slowly begins to piece itself together, if only for the sake of a sorrowful truth. Readers will enjoy the gripping plot twists and evocative narrative. Those who love thrillers in general will also love this book.