A spinal fixation apparatus and method for applying corrective forces to the spine through the use of one or more longitudinal rods placed adjacent the spine. A plurality of sublaminar hooks are configured to be independently mountable to the longitudinal rod and enable the surgeon to selectively engage portions of the spine against which the corrective forces are to be applied. Cross-link plates are provided and are used to interlink one longitudinal rod to another to provide a more rigid construct. The sublaminar hooks and the cross link plate system has a very low profile when secured to the spine. Side opening recesses in each sublaminar hook accommodate the lateral insertion of the longitudinal rod into the recess. A unique wedge bolt securely engages the longitudinal rod in the recess. The sublaminar hooks are oriented such that their wedge bolts face outwardly for ease of access for adjusting the same.