CUCKOO tells the story of Rose and Polly. When Polly's husband dies in a car accident, Rose invites her friend into her house, telling her she should stay with her family until she has got herself back on track. Then, unsurprisingly, Rose begins to regret her decision.
Without wanting to give too much away, even when Rose is beginning to have doubts about her friend, there are reasons why she does not just ask her to leave. All of the characters in this book have some kind of back story, making them far more complex than they at first appear. However, this does not make them any more likeable. I think, for me, this was the main problem with the book - although I read on until the end, it wasn't because I really cared about Rose. In fact, as the book progresses, I began to doubt to Rose. Because not much of the action is definite - you are never sure, really, if Rose is right to think that Polly is trying to take her place or whether Rose is paranoid - by the end of the book you are hoping for some kind of resolution to this. However, this does not happen. By the end of the book, you still don't know if Rose was right or just paranoid, plus the ending is an anticlimax, in my opinion.
After reading this book I would not rush to pick up Crouch's next offering. Although there were moments of tension, by the last third of the book or so I was just becoming frustrated with it. The tension was wound up only to be slowed down by Crouch describing in minute detail the layout of the house for the umpteemth time, or talking about what Rose was going to cook for them all, and who was going to help her etc, etc. Although the characters had background stories, Crouch didn't do enough for me to care about them - by the end of the book, if Polly was trying to take Rose's place, I really wasn't that bothered about if she succeeded or not.
Unfortunately, I wouldn't recommend this book and I doubt I shall read her next one.