On the same night Karas little brother was born her mother was executed for witchcraft. Now 8 years later the villagers scorns her and calls her "witch girl" and her father has become a wreck.
Kara tries to take care of her sickly brother Taff who she loves she also has a friend,Lucas who is a Cleaner. Cleaners are the lowest in the village and their job is to try and keep back The Thickety.A wood full of weird trees and deadly monsters and all of ruled over by the forest demon Sordyr.
The community where Kara lives ,the Fold is a strict community that closed itself off from the outside world centuries ago.
After a crowlike thing lures her into the Thickety Kara finds a buried book,a grimoire belonging to her mother. She also encounter Sordyr but manages to escape the Thickety just in time.
Sordyr has an orange cloak,but you get the idea
Kara after a while learns how she can use the grimoire to summon and command any animal she wants and she finds herself using the magic more and more,but when a former friends of her mother warns her that the grimoire is more dangerous than she can understand she tries to stop using it.
At the same time Fende Stone -the man who convicted her mother of witchcraft watches Kara for signs of witchcraft while his daughter Grace who on the surface seems to be very nice and devout girl but hides a manipulative and cruel personality and when she learns of the grimoires existance she decides she wants it and its power for herself.
And what Grace wants she will get...one way or another.
The Thickety is a book wich I did like in its way but that I cant claim to love despite it having many things I do love in a book. First of all its dark,maybe too dark for the demographic its originally aimed at.
Fende Stone was an unpleasant man,but he was nothing when in comparision with Grace.I felt vaguely unclean from reading about her evilness. In her way Grace is used as a foil for Kara,showing her what the grimoire could turn her into.
There is mention of torture of the maincharacter,it does happen offpage but I just felt uncomfortable at the mere thought of a 12 year old girl being physically abused.
It was all very metaphorical not unlike a situation a teenager might find herself or himself in
There is the dead mother,the depressed father,the sick brother,bullies,religious opression,poverty etc misery,gloom,bleakness......
When I started to really think about I felt it was trying to deal with too many issues all at once.Obviously trying to cram so many things into the story makes the book take its time to build up to the more meaningful scenes. I was halfway through the book when I realized it felt like the book was stalling.
It was if I may be a bit fanciful like fighting your way through the Woods and then realizing you have been so busy avoiding to get snagged or stepping into a hole but you have barely moved at all.
And then the showdown at the end just comes all at once.
Now that Ive mentioned that I would like to end with some good things.
Kara is a great character.
The plot twist with the book Karas father keeps writing in was pretty neat.
When the Jabenhook ,a character from a story Kara made up for her brother does turn up towards the end part of the book I was like YEAAAAAHHH.