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Search tags: The-Darkest-Part-of-the-Forest
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video 2018-11-06 14:21
The Darkest Part of the Forest - Holly Black
Insanity - Cameron Jace
Figment (Insanity Book 2) - Cameron Jace
The Return of the King - J.R.R. Tolkien
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review 2018-06-20 13:49
The Darkest Part of the Forest - Holly Black

For more reviews, check out my blog: Craft-Cycle

I really enjoyed this book. First of all, the whole concept of sharing a town/forest with fey is fascinating. I loved reading about all of Hazel's adventures in the woods and the weird goings-on in Fairfold. I found the characters to be interesting and enjoyed the writing style.

The story itself was also amazing. This book sucks you in and takes you for a ride. After awhile, I didn't even really care what happened at the end, I was just enjoying the journey. Great storytelling.

I haven't read much by Holly Black (I've been meaning to, I swear), but this seems to be a sort of Spiderwick Chronicles for YA audiences.

The only downside to the book was that the climax seemed pretty quick. When I got to that part I was like, "Oh, that was easy." This huge daunting problem was resolved in a few seconds. It was kind of a letdown, but I still really enjoyed the resolution, which is why I still gave the book 5 stars. Usually once the big plot is solved in a book, I lose interest in what happens next. For me, the story is basically over and the rest is just tying up lose ends. With this one, the problem was solved and I still wanted to know what happened to all of the characters and to see what happened next. The writing was that good. I almost wish this wasn't a standalone (which is a big deal for me, because I hate YA trilogies), because I just want to jump into the world of Fairfold again. 

Very well-writing and fascinating story. I loved it. Can't wait to read more by Holly Black. 

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review 2017-10-02 16:05
The Darkest Part of the Forest / Holly Black
The Darkest Part of the Forest - Holly Black

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?

 

 

I read this book to fill the “In the Dark, Dark Woods” square of my 2017 Halloween Bingo card.

 

I am continually amazed at how much I enjoy some of these “young adult” novels!  This one is definitely in the “really good” category.  I’m a sucker for stories that include the Fae, especially if they’re dark, mysterious & threatening.   

 

The story also explores the brother-sister relationship between Hazel and Ben, how they support one another and how they lie to one another and the consequences of both of those choices.  There’s a boy with horns and pointed ears asleep in a glass coffin (very Cinderella-ish) in the middle of the dark, dark woods and both siblings are in love with him or maybe with the stories they’ve created around him.  No one expects him to awake, and when he does, perhaps they believe their own imaginations too much and aren’t as worried as they should be.

 

The need for love, the need for purpose, and the love & support of family, all explored in an adventurous fairy tale.  Delightful!

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review 2017-01-04 14:09
The Darkest Part of the Forest
The Darkest Part of the Forest - Holly Black

This was great fun! I loved the way Black plays with some of the more common tropes in YA.

To begin with, this is a standalone. That almost never happens in YA anymore and I appreciate that it's a whole story even though I do love the world building. Then it's also about faeries. I'm not one for faeries most of the time, but something had made me put this book on my wish list at the library and it was the first audiobook I had come to on the day I downloaded it to my app. I just figured past-me had decided it was going to be interesting and went with it. The audiobook is narrated by Lauren Fortgang.
 
The story predominantly surrounds Hazel and Ben and their decisions, but these characters don't exactly follow gender role while not residing completely on the opposing sides of the spectrum when it comes to their genders either. To be more specific, Hazel isn't girly, but she's still feminine and Ben is neither macho nor effeminate. Ben is also gay, which makes his standing in the middle of what is expected for a male character all the better for me. While I do understand that there are effeminate gay men, I feel like fiction would have you believe that it is the only way to be gay sometimes. Maybe it's just tv and movies, though since First Kisses and Other Misfortunes by Kimberly Karalius had the same dynamic with the gay characters being not strictly effeminate.
 
 Having Ben as a gay character, also allows Black to another fun thing. She combines some of the brother-sister struggles with some struggles that are typically reserved for sisters, like having a crush on or having romantic associations with the same boy. I don't know how true to life that is, but they tend to lean more on confused boys who aren't sure if they are also gay and those who aren't ready to be out right at the beginning. Ben is sure of himself, others are not, and this creates confusion and tension for our siblings as sometimes both have feelings for the boy. I hope that wasn't confusing but I don't want to give away any big reveals either.
 
I truly enjoyed reading a book about a brother and sister who actually like each other too. They aren't besties and definitely have their own separate personalities and preferences in life but they look out for each other. They care about each other. And they mess it up sometimes too but never getting so angsty and dramatic that it seems more like someone's ridiculous version of what teenagers are like. Families are complicated and this book does a great job with a brother-sister dynamic. There is some teenage drama but it's not all angst and ridiculousness like some books may want people to believe all teens are like. They're capable of assessing dangerous situations and making some adult decisions and dealing with consequences. They do have reason and accountability and are not completely ruled by hormones, just partially, sometimes.  They are gaining experience to deal with situations better but aren't complete idiots in the mean time.
 
There are other great things in the book, but I feel like those would spoil it. Suffice it to say that while many typically YA behaviors/tropes are present, I didn't feel like they were rooted in the same places that I've grown tired of them, like villain motivations. Everything is just similar enough to be familiar but then changed ever so slightly that I wasn't sure until it happened. The book's sole claim to diversity is the LGBT characters. I felt like it dealt well with the LGBT aspect of those characters, but I am completely aware that I could be wrong due to the fact that I am not LGBT nor do I know many people who are. If you disagree, share it and I can amend. I'd hate for misinformation to set people up for disappointment. Until then, great book! I loved what she did to all the characters and taking them outside my expectations!
 
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review 2016-09-22 18:06
The Darkest Part of the Forest
The Darkest Part of the Forest - Holly Black

I'm finding that I am just not a big fan of Holly Black. I didn't love The Coldest Girl in Coldtown as I found it boring whereas most people loved it. The same goes to The Darkest Part of the Forest, its just boring. I almost didn't finish listening to it. 

 

Hazel and her brother Ben live in a town where humans live next to the fae. Hazel has a connection with the fae unlike the rest of the town. The problem is she can't remember most of it. 

 

The one thing I do like about this book is the sibling relationship, as I always want to see more of that in YA books. But man, it just dragged. There is a lot of dialogue and scenes going back and forth. This is something I won't remember in a few months time. 

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