From School Library Journal
Gr 9 Up-After high-school dropout Finn Maguire comes home to find his starving-writer father (really his stepfather) bludgeoned to death at the dining room table, he makes it his mission to find the killer. Meanwhile, his lack of cooperation with authorities has some members of the police force pegging Finn as the suspect. Leonard introduces numerous characters as possible suspects, causing the story to take many twists and turns that leave readers guessing the identity of the murderer until the very end. Finn frequently finds himself engaged in battle with villains as he pursues leads into his father's death with a vengeance, carrying a feeling of suspense throughout the novel. Some of the British slang may throw American readers off, but overall the language discrepancies do not take away from the fast-paced story line.-Nicole Knott, Watertown High School, CTα(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
"One of my favourite authors is Simon Kernick whose books I can devour in a single sitting. I would put the amazing Niall Leonard in the same category because CRUSHER was just as gripping and pulse-pounding and gave me sweaty palms from start to finish... If you enjoy crime novels then you'll love CRUSHER, which is one of the best young adult novels within this genre I've ever read." A Dream of Books blog "I was addicted to this from the first chapter... The storyline is compelling, peppered with so many twists and turns that you will question everything, and has an amazingly explosive ending that you will not be expecting. CRUSHER is a fabulous debut from Niall Leonard that is definitely not to be missed!" FictionFascination blog "I thoroughly enjoyed this young adult debut thriller by Niall Leonard... Finn Maguire is an extremely well-drawn and empathetic character." Raven Crime Reads blog "Finn is beautifully observed - a teenage boy in a world of trouble who is brave and persistent but who also inhabits a taciturn emotional landscape that readers will engage with... There are some fantastic action scenes, including a truly great escape and a visceral fight... The plot is cleverly worked-through with all sorts of twists and turns and paced for breathlessness and page-turning. CRUSHER has all the ingredients of a great YA thriller - accessibility, character, plot, action, pacing." The Bookbag "This thriller travels at a gripping pace" Publishers Weekly