SET YOU FREE
Shortlisted for Best Mystery, YA, Arthur Ellis Award
Starred Entry in CCBC Best Books for Kids and Teens
Booklist - October 5, 2015
"This tale of suspense about the simultaneous disappearance of a young child and an enigmatic teenager turns out to be not at all what it seems...The narrow squeaks and plot twists are well placed, and as an unreliable narrator, Lauren holds attention from bleary beginning to triumphant close."
School Library Journal - October 1, 2015
"Well-developed characters, an original plot, and a thrilling story line make this book impossible to put down. This page-turner is a must read for teens who enjoy mystery...An extremely well written crime thriller that asks the question 'How well do you really know anyone?'"
CM Magazine - September 18, 2015
"Effectively stretches out the tension inherent in a missing child case, gradually getting more fast-paced and exciting...The writing is engaging, and the mystery is intriguing...Set You Free would make an interesting departure point to discuss law versus morality: is it ever okay to disobey the law in order to do something right? The book could also be used in a discussion of unreliable narrators. Teens will enjoy the good writing and the suspenseful, action elements of the plot."
Kirkus Reviews - August 1, 2015
"Lauren's edgy personality, Grady's admirable tricks, and plenty of suspense make this a worthy read. An engaging and entertaining mystery."
Yvonne Prinz, author - April 30, 2015
"Fans of small town crime thrillers will really enjoy this brisk page-turner from Jeff Ross."
The mayor’s six-year-old son, Ben Carter, is missing—and Lauren’s brother, Tom, is the main suspect. Lauren knows her brother would never harm anyone, but the police don’t agree. Ben’s stepbrother doesn’t agree. The mayor certainly doesn’t agree. To some people in Resurrection Falls, Tom is the freak who, rumor has it, once tried to lure a kid into the woods.
But if Tom is innocent, why was he lurking around outside the mayor’s house the night Ben disappeared? And why has he also vanished? After teaming up with Tom’s friend, Grady, a computer enthusiast and part-time hacker, Lauren decides that rather than try to prove Tom’s innocence, they should simply give the police some more options. Because everyone, even the mayor’s apparently perfect family, has secrets.
Where it came from: I love mysteries. Some of my favorite authors are crime writers. Set You Free came from my wanting to create something in the YA genre that would throw the reader off at every turn. I am very pleased to have this as my first stand-alone, full length novel. It really turned out exactly as I wanted it to.