The Hazel Wood
Author: Melissa Albert
Published: January 30, 2018
Reviewed By: Kim
Kim’s Rating: 4 stars
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 super fan 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.
The buzz surrounding this book has been so loud . . . like a big beehive! I have been seeing it everywhere; I’ve seen it on Facebook, booktube, EpicReads, Amazon . . . everywhere! I read the description and took one look at the cover, and I wanted it. I found it for super cheap at Sam’s Club (along with some pizza but we’re not gonna talk about that, because I don’t have a problem! ?)
This is a dark piece of fantasy. I was all set for a haunted house with a creepy old grandmother, but instead you have dark fairy tale characters walking around hurting people in the real world and blood doors opening up to a dead world. I hope Albert publishes a collection of all the fairy tales mentioned in this book. I appreciate a good, scary tale! Interestingly enough, the first half of the book is more build up and background info than actual story. It wasn’t boring at all, but I was just surprised at how much was stuffed into this book without being squished. Alice is an ok character; I don’t think she was meant to be super likeable. She’s a prickly teenager who hasn’t had a normal life. I liked Finch much better! He’s a cool “fanboy” who has a romantic hidden inside. Overall, this was a great read! There were some areas where I felt like I had missed something and there was a lot of swearing for a teen book. But I liked it a lot and I look forward to the next book in the series.