16 April 2018

Review - The Hazel Wood

I read this dramatic story earlier this year and I ashamed to say that I let forgetting to post my review so figured it was about time I pulled my socks up and posted it...

The Hazel Wood
by Melissa Albert

What they say: Seventeen-year-old Alice and her mother have spent most of Alice’s life on the road, always a step ahead of the uncanny bad luck biting at their heels. But when Alice’s grandmother, the reclusive author of a cult-classic book of pitch-dark fairy tales, dies alone on her estate, the Hazel Wood, Alice learns how bad her luck can really get: her mother is stolen away―by a figure who claims to come from the Hinterland, the cruel supernatural world where her grandmother's stories are set. Alice's only lead is the message her mother left behind: “Stay away from the Hazel Wood.”

Alice has long steered clear of her grandmother’s cultish fans. But now she has no choice but to ally with classmate Ellery Finch, a Hinterland superfan who may have his own reasons for wanting to help her. To retrieve her mother, Alice must venture first to the Hazel Wood, then into the world where her grandmother's tales began―and where she might find out how her own story went so wrong.

I received a copy in exchange for an honest review!

What I say: A quirky and unique take on some well known stories. Mystery, drama and intrigue The Hazel Wood has it all. 

It reminded me of YA mashup somewhere between Grimm and the episode of Supernatural when the Winchester guys find the comic about their lives where the events are becoming real - well sort of!

Alice is rather hard to like at times but that's sort of the point. That being said the girl has anger issues and I'm not sure I'd want to meet her in a dark alley. The position she's in means she doesn't have to be likeable because the story or rather stories are harsh, dark and oh-so-gothic. I was surprised just how dark Melissa Albert takes her story at times.

I wasn't entirely sure what to make of certain characters at times, Ellery I mean you. I love a classic quote but felt as though he was a little try hard. I also had issues with Hinterland not being but kinda being Wonderland. This being said I really enjoyed the book and ended up buying copies for two of my bookish friends.

The world building is extremely clever. From Albert's descriptions I could envision what Alice was seeing and experiencing. 

So overall: some elements I really liked and others not-so-much but it serves as a good introduction to Albert's style and the series. 

3.5 Stars in my Sky!


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