Review: The Darkest Part of the Forest by Holly Black

December 31, 2014 5 stars, Book Review 25 ★★★★★

Review: The Darkest Part of the Forest by Holly BlackThe Darkest Part of the Forest by Holly Black
Published by Little Brown Books for Young Readers on January 13, 2015
Genres: Fantasy, Romance, Young Adult
Pages: 336
Format: ARC
Source: Publisher
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*This book was provided by the Publisher for review. No compensation was provided and all opinions are strictly my own.

Children can have a cruel, absolute sense of justice. Children can kill a monster and feel quite proud of themselves. A girl can look at her brother and believe they’re destined to be a knight and a bard who battle evil. She can believe she’s found the thing she’s been made for.

Hazel lives with her brother, Ben, in the strange town of Fairfold where humans and fae exist side by side. The faeries’ seemingly harmless magic attracts tourists, but Hazel knows how dangerous they can be, and she knows how to stop them. Or she did, once.

At the center of it all, there is a glass coffin in the woods. It rests right on the ground and in it sleeps a boy with horns on his head and ears as pointed as knives. Hazel and Ben were both in love with him as children. The boy has slept there for generations, never waking.

Until one day, he does…

As the world turns upside down, Hazel tries to remember her years pretending to be a knight. But swept up in new love, shifting loyalties, and the fresh sting of betrayal, will it be enough?

A modern day fairytale with that old world feel

The Darkest Part of the Forest takes place in a modern town bordered by a forest full of fey. Its quite the hot tourist attraction what with the ageless young horned boy that lies asleep in a glass coffin in the woods. But the townspeople know that the fey can be dangerous and as they’ve lived alongside them for years they always take precautions that the tourists never do. Something has been changing though because not only are tourists being preyed upon by the fey but now townsfolk as well.

Kiss the boys and make them cry

Hazel is a bit of a heart breaker. She likes to have fun and she isn’t opposed to trysting with the boys at parties with a few heated kisses. But she never wants anything more then that…except maybe she does and is too afraid to go after the one boy she shouldn’t want…her brother’s best friend Jack.

The musician who refuses to make music

When Ben was just a baby his artist mother was painting in the woods and met a fey lady who bestowed a blessing/curse of music upon Ben. The gift was that of music – to be able to enrapture anyone that listens. But all gifts from the fey are double edged.

Of both worlds and neither

Jack is a changeling who grew up in the town of Fairfold as if he were any normal human boy – except in his case everyone in town knows he is a changeling. His foster mother realized as soon as he was swapped for her own child that she wasn’t the baby she had given birth to and thus hatched a plan to get her baby back but when she did she refused to give up Jack saying that any mother who would willingly leave her child doesn’t deserve them and so she raised both babies as her own.

Be careful what you wish for

This book revolves around Hazel (16) and her brother Ben (17). Mostly though this is Hazel’s story. She’s always held this childhood dream of being a knight ever since they were children playing in the woods that surround their town of Fairfold and discover a half eaten body by the lake. A nasty hag attacks Hazel and with the help of Ben and a sword Hazel finds they are able to put an end to the nasty water hag. From then on Hazel is determined to protect the people from harm. But she and her brother were in more danger then she wanted to admit and Ben soon puts a stop to their adventuring because of his mounting worry. But Hazel doesn’t ever want to stop – so she makes a bargain…now flash forward about 6 years…

Your debts are coming due

The horned boy in the glass coffin is missing and Hazel’s debt to the fey for her bargain has come due. Her and her brother who have both been in love with the horned boy since they were children are set on finding and helping him and enlist the help of Ben’s best friend Jack.

Magical, engrossing and a YA fantasy definitely not to be missed

The Darkest Part of the Forest was all around fun. At times dark and foreboding with parts that made me ache with sadness to others that were full of magic – the story did a fabulous job of embodying a true fairytale while placing it in a modern setting. I’ve really enjoyed everything I’ve read thus far by this author. She has such a smooth and easy writing style that had me flying through the pages and at the end before the day was through. The characters were dynamic and the story didn’t seem to suffer any of the typical YA tropes that frequently plaque some of the other YA books I’ve read. If you are a lover of fairytales this right here is the book of goodies you want.

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Tabitha (Pabkins)

When I'm in the zone I can flip book pages faster than the eye can see - screaming "More Input!" I'm a book, yarn, & art supply hoarding goblin who loves to draw, make toys and craft all sorts of creepy cute things. My current habit is to listen to audio books while I'm arting it up!
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25 Responses to “Review: The Darkest Part of the Forest by Holly Black”

  1. Berls

    Love the way you did this review! I read this one too – I think the review is scheduled for next week – and loved it too 🙂 I totally agree with everything you say. I LOVED that this had the brother and sister thing going on, I always love books that do sibling relationships well. Great review 🙂
    Berls recently posted…Out With The Old & In With The New | October 2014My Profile

  2. Cristina

    MAGICAL aaaaaaaaaaand a CHANGELING!?!?! Yes please!! *grabby hands* Honestly…I haven’t read anything by Holly Black but this book sounds like it’s all me! *snickers* Now I believe I will be heading to goodreads to add this to my ever growing TBR! 🙂
    Cristina recently posted…Redeployment by Phil KlayMy Profile

  3. lily

    I have to admit to passing this one on several occasions because I just didn’t think it was for me but after your lovely review i’m starting to reconsider it. Plus, I’ve never stepped out of my comfort zone and read anything about Fey. I’m tempted.

  4. Valerie

    THIS SOUNDS SO GOOD. I’m really curious with everything you’ve said because it sounds so weird and random but also so magical at the same time. I want to see how everything connects together. This comes out this month right? Well there goes my money haha. I’ll see if it’s at the library first then.
    Valerie recently posted…Review: Red RisingMy Profile

  5. Gina @ Behind the Pages

    I absolutely loved this book too! It was my first Holly Black book, and it was definitely a stunner. I couldn’t agree with you more on everything you said. It was brilliant how she blended the real world with the fantasy world. Brilliant review.
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