Monday, August 20, 2018

The Hazel Wood

The Hazel Wood. Melissa Albert. 2018. 368 pages. [Source: Library]
First sentence: My mother was raised on fairy tales, but I was raised on highways.

Premise/plot: Alice and her mother, Ella, have spent years running and hiding. Alice has never known quite what they are running from or why. What was it in Ella's past that has led to her being so afraid to just live? But Alice thinks it may have something to do with her grandmother--Ella's mother. Althea Prosperine is a reclusive oh-so-famous author. Her book of fairy tales is super-rare and near impossible to find. But those who do find it and read it--well, they often become extreme fans. Alice may never have read the book herself, but, she's encountered the fans. And what she's seen has scared her.

When Ella is kidnapped and their apartment ransacked, Alice teams up with a classmate to discover the truth about her past. How far is she willing to go to find her mother? Is it worth risking her own life?

My thoughts: I found The Hazel Wood to be a compelling read. It is not necessarily inspired by any one fairy tale. It isn't yet another adaptation of this or that. Stories are often dark and happily ever afters are not assured. If Alice herself wants a happily ever after she'll have to fight, fight, fight to break free from her story, from her story as the storyteller decreed it.

I am glad I read it. As far as language goes, this one isn't clean so it may not be for everyone.

© 2018 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

1 comment:

Alyssa Nelson said...

I've been eyeing this, but the holds on the digital version for my library are outrageous. I can't wait to read it, though. Great review!