By: Ella Sutherland & Lauren Kottke
‘Where The Crawdads Sing’ is a book about a girl named Kya growing up on her own in a marsh who gets involved with a murder case.
Summary (CONTAINS MAJOR SPOILERS)
Kya has grown up most of her life alone on the North Carolina marsh. Her family left one by one because of the abusive household. Her mom left when she was 6 years old, and her brother left not long after. Kya and her dad started having a good relationship, until Kya’s mother tried to contact them again. He began his drinking again and left her to live alone on the marsh.
Kyas never fit in with the rest of the town. If she were to go into the town, people would look at her and scold her. She didn’t wear the right clothes for them or talk the same. She was called the “Marsh Girl” because she lived alone, and isolated, on the marsh. But she loved everything about living on the marsh. She loved to feed the birds and explore the species.
After Kya’s family left her, a social worker came to the marsh and sent her to school. Kya went and immediately felt judged. Unlike all the other kids, she couldn’t read. She ended up never going back to school, but she did learn how to read.
Her childhood friend, Tate, left bird feathers on a tree stump for Kya knowing that she had a love for the marsh. They started talking and Tate offered to teach her how to read. They began growing a friendship and then a romantic relationship. They spent every day together on the marsh. Tate was never ashamed of their relationship, even though people judged him.
After a couple years of their relationship, Tate had to leave for college. He didn’t want to become trapped in the small town and knew that college was his only way out. He loved Kya but also wanted a better future for himself. Kya was obviously upset with his decision to leave. Tate promised he would come back for her on the 4th of July.
Kya waited months and months for Tate to come back to her. She waited for days after the 4th of July, but Tate never showed up. She was heart broken. Tate had become such an important person in her life, and he left like the rest of her family. She became depressed and lost her love for the marsh.
She began to fall back in love with the marsh. Kya went back to feeding the birds and exploring again. She was still angry and disappointed in Tate, but knew she had to get back up. One day, when she was exploring by the shore of the marsh, she spotted a group of people walking down by the water. She quickly climbed up a tree in the fear she would be seen. She could see that it was the star quarterback of the town, Chase Andrews, and his friends. They all came from rich families of the town. While the group of teenagers was walking down, Chase looked up at the tree and saw Kya. He didn’t say anything but held eye contact. Kya’s heart was racing. Like how it used to be for Tate. She didn’t know how to react to the feeling. She knew all the girls went head over heels for him, and now she could see why.
A couple days later, Kya and Chase met at the boat port while getting gas. Chase asked Kya to go out on a date. At first Kya was hesitant to say yes because of his reputation. They ended up going on a picnic date. Chase brought Kya over to a part of the marsh and they sat by the shore. They had a really good conversation and Kya thought it was going well. Chase leaned in for a kiss but it became more. Kya pushed Chase off and ran through the woods home.
While Kya was boating around in the marsh a week later, she saw Chase. He waved her over and she boated over to him. She didn’t trust him but wanted to know what he had to say. Chase apologized for making Kya feel uncomfortable and wanted a second chance.
Kya gave him the second chance.
They had a relationship for a while. Their whole relationship, Chase kept it a secret. Unlike Tate, who wasn’t ashamed to be involved with Kya.
One day, Kya went to her mailbox and grabbed the newspaper. As she was reading it she saw Chase’s name in the upcoming engagements. She was shocked. She had been seeing him for months without him mentioning he was getting married. The next day, Chase came to see Kya, but she didn’t answer.
The murder part of the book comes in after Chase and Kya end their relationship. Chase is found dead in a swamp by a fire tower. Chase was pushed off of the fire tower. Kya became a suspect because of her relationship with Chase. Although there was circumstantial evidence against Kya, she had an alibi for the night Chase died. There was also no hair or fingerprints found at the crime scene. One piece of evidence they had against Kya was a shell necklace Kya gave Chase. Chase always wore the necklace. But when they found his body, it was no longer on him.
While Kya was put on trial for the murder case, Tate came back. He came back years before but saw Kya with Chase so thought she had moved on. He still loved her and didn’t believe she would commit murder. He stayed by her side the whole time.
Kya gets ruled innocent and let free. She and Tate lived out the rest of their lives together. They weren’t able to have children, but they had nieces and nephews. She got the family she wanted her whole life. She continued her love for the marsh and even wrote books on them.
The last part of the book is when Kya passes away in her late 60s. Tate is cleaning out some of her stuff when he finds a necklace. A shell necklace. Tate is frozen in shock. Everyone in town was convinced that Chase’s death was an accident. But in reality Kya had pulled off a murder.
Lauren: I loved this book! I loved how much detail there was. I could picture the marsh with the blue water and all of the characters. I was also shocked by the ending. In the beginning I thought it could be Kya, but I thought it was too obvious. The author did a great job tricking the readers. I would rate this book a 5/5.
Ella: I also loved this book. My favorite part was the love interests. Both of the love interests were so different and had a different impact on Kya. I think the way the book was written made the book even better. It was written from the past with Kya, and the present with the murder. While reading the book I would always be on the edge of my seat. I would rate this book a 4/5.