“Where the Crawdads Sing” Review


Ross High School students reads “Where the Crawdads Sing.”

When I first heard of the book, “Where the Crawdads Sing,” by Delia Owens it was from the announcement that artist and musician Taylor Swift would have a song featured in the film. Of course in the months following I saw much talk of the movie online, but as someone who’s not a big reader I never really planned on reading the book. However, my curiosity got the best of me, and I read it, and I absolutely fell in love with it. 

From the complex jumping from year to year, to the absolutely mind boggling plot twist end, Owens did an amazing job writing this book. The detail, the storytelling, the plot, and the characters, there’s so much to obsess over. I, however, believe that my favorite part was definitely the storytelling. 

The author’s ability to make the reader feel like you are in the book is unmatched. I was brought back to some very on-the-shelf memories as I read this book, and I was reminded of that isolated, small, feeling I felt in moments I tried so hard to bury inside. Owens uses vast feelings, and specifies it to the main character, Kya, to allow the reader to really see how she feels. 

Though many of us can’t relate to being abandoned in the woods at a young age such as Kya was, many of us can probably relate to the feeling of being alone, small, or vulnerable. Just like Kya was as she grew up alone in the Marsh, with everyone living in town making a joke out of her. It was so easy to take that one very translatable feeling of loneliness by allowing readers to step out of their own experiences with the feeling and step into her experiences. 

Another thing I loved about this story was the unexpected plot twist end. Just when you thought the events were going as you wanted them to, the end takes a complete 180 turn, and you’re left feeling bamboozled. 

In a recent survey conducted by the RoHiTi, half of the responses included the ending as their favorite part. 

Freshman Kameron Commins stated, “I had no idea that the twist was going to happen.” 

While the ending does throw you for a loop, it doesn’t take away from the other more wholesome aspects of the story, like the people Kya gains in her life as family. One of the most significant characters in the story was one by the name of “Jumpin’.” Jumpin is a black man who owns a fishing shop on the outskirts of the town by the marsh. This is a storyline I think the book did better at.

The story takes place in the 1940’s-1960’s in North Carolina. So, I liked how the book highlighted the struggles African Americans went through pertaining to segregation.

I liked how the book shows that even though the black people were discriminated against, they still were good people despite what society said at the time. I also love how Jumpin, and his wife Mabel take Kya in as their own. And help her through important times of her life.

The movie, which debuted on July 15, directed by Olivia Newman, was a highly awaited release. However, it only reached a box office profit of 89.6 million dollars, which is considerably low compared to other movies released at this time such as Top Gun: Maverick, which grossed at a whopping 711.6 billion dollars. This movie, however, has an audience score of 96% on Rotten Tomatoes. 

In my opinion, this movie is a must see. I love the casting, and the creative decisions. Overall, I prefer the book. The movie was consistent with the book, and it lined up really well, however, the book does a better job of explaining smaller details, and you know a lot more than you would from just watching the movie. For example the movie doesn’t have much representation of the segregation that the book includes, and I felt like that was an important plot line. 

With the exceptional plot, creative decisions, and superb storytelling, I would highly recommend this book to anyone. Owens offers many different aspects, and it definitely can appeal to different people in different ways. I would recommend reading the book before watching the movie, because you’ll have more background information, and it might make more sense while watching it. You can find the book in your local Target or online.