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Reviewed by Susan Sewell for Readers' Favorite
A group of teens tries to prevent a crime to protect their friend in The First Twinge (Cramping Chronicles #1) by Joey Paul. Several months ago, fifteen-year-old Jessie was diagnosed with Myalgic Encephalomyelitis and Fibromyalgia. It isn't long before she discovers that whenever she is in the vicinity of someone hurting, her pain level significantly rises. On top of everything else, at the beginning of term, Jessie has to leave her best friend, Gray, behind and switch to Crosswoods, a school that will accommodate her wheelchair. Jessie makes friends with Craig, Meera, and Roe a few days after starting at Crosswoods. Unfortunately, her relationship with Meera is painful, literally. Meera's life is in a crisis, and every time she is near Jessie, her emotional trauma puts Jessie in agony. Concerned that being near Meera will affect her ability to attend school, Jessie turns to Gray and her new friends to help her solve Meera's dilemma. As the five friends attempt to resolve the situation, they realize Meera is in danger. If they go to the police, will it be worse for Meera? What will happen if they don't?
Filled with teenage angst and drama, Cramping Chronicles: The First Twinge by Joey Paul is an exciting young adult novel with a paranormal twist. A fascinating plot, engaging characters, and a unique storyline captivate the reader from the first page until the last. The book contains almost everything cozy mystery and young sleuth fans could want: kidnapping, sinister villains, drama, and suspense. It is the first book in a series, and I look forward to meeting Jessie and Gray in future episodes. This compelling novel will entertain and thrill everyone from twelve to a hundred who loves an intriguing amateur sleuth novel with a courageous heroine and a hint of the paranormal.