Monday, 12 October 2009

The Hollow by Jessica Verday

From Amazon: Growing up in the town of Sleepy Hollow, the mystery and intrigue over Washington Irving's classic legend are all part of daily life for sixteen-year-old Abbey. But when her best friend, Kristen, vanishes at the bridge near Sleepy Hollow Cemetery, Abbey's world is suddenly turned upside down. While everyone is all too quick to accept that Kristen is dead, Abbey refuses to believe that she is really gone. And when Abbey meets the gorgeous, but mysterious, Caspian at Kristen's memorial she starts to feel like she has something to hold on to for the first time since Kristen's disappearance...

The Hollow succeeded in both frustrating and intriguing me at the same time. My frustration stemmed from a slow plot and too much description which, while not necessarily a bad thing, didn't make me want to rush home and continue with the story.

The Sleepy Hollow story and characters were interesting enough, and I was suprised by the secret revealed towards the end. It might not have been the bombshell I was expecting, but I still thought it was a clever twist that should make the second book in the series a really good read. All the threads and background information have been set up in The Hollow, so hopefully future books can dive straight into the story.

I would have liked more relationship development between Abbey and Caspian, as they ended up falling into my I've-just-met-him-and-I-love-him category. Romantic relationships like that lack realism, and I find them hard to comprehend. More depth and character interaction would have made a big difference, and I think this is something Verday will explore in the sequels. I enjoyed her writing and ideas, and think she has a lot of potential as an author.

I think The Hollow's readers will form a love/hate relationship with this novel and, like me, will ponder their afterthoughts for quite a while. Though not amazing, it does try to stand out from the crowd, and I applaud Verday for trying to think outside the box.

16 comments:

Ladybug said...

I hope I'll like this one, I won a copy of it in a contest last week. It seems to get very mixed reviews.

Chicklish said...

It sounds interesting. Thanks for the great review!

So Many Books, So Little Time said...

Great reveiw! I still haven't read this, it's just not shouting at me to be read right now!

elnice said...

I have not sceen this cover yet, I like it. I am anxious to read this book, I love the original legend.

Jo said...

Great review, Jenny! You make me nervous to read the book, though. I thought it sounded awesome, and have been dying to read it, but now I'm not so sure. Hmm. Will see!

Becky said...

Ummmm...a really interesting review. I'm intrigued by the secret but I do like books to move at a fast pace. This is a "maybe" for me.

Cat said...

I am torn about this book as I have read varying reviews. Hmm. Though I do much prefer the UK cover (and paper back!) to the North American one. When/if I do get it I'll be ordering from The Book Depository. ;)

Just Your Typical Book Blog said...

Nice review. I haven't read this one yet, I'm waiting to get it in a tour. I've read lots of mixed reviews, but more lean towards what you said in yours.

April said...

I've really seen a lot of mixed reviews of The Hollow. I'm hoping when I read it I will be on the love side of the equation. However, it is a bit disheartening to read about the lack of character development and dialogue, and I'm not a huge fan of the whole -oh I love you though I just met you- plotlines, although teen girls have been known to act that way, it's still not my cup of coffee.

Tere Kirkland said...

Good review. I understand what you mean about the slow plot, but to me, the way it was written it was still hard to put down. I was frustrated too, with the ending, but I have high hopes for the second and third installments.

Something about the tone of this book really appealed to me, though, and it was different from the standard YA paranormal romance.

For anyone who's interested, just leave a comment on Thursday's post on my writing blog, The Lesser Key, and you could win a copy!

La Coccinelle said...

Nice review! I pretty much agree. There was way too much description, and it seemed to come at the expense of plot and character development. Honestly... do we really need to know how many scoops of bath salts she used? I kept thinking that these little nuggets were going to be relevant to the plot somehow... and when they turned out to be just filler, I was pretty annoyed.

Books like this make me question whether editors even exist anymore.

Lauren said...

I haven't read this yet, and I've been really looking forward to it. I definitely feel less excited about it now on one level - but I'm also really interested to see whether I agree with you and the other less-than-glowing review I read today.

Kate said...

Interesting review. I was all prepared for this to be amazing. Thanks for your honesty. I still want to read this book =)

The Book Owl said...

Nice review. I'm still interested in seeing how I like it.

one shelfish blogger said...

Agreed! I really didn't like this book much either, but somehow, I think I'm still intrigued enough read the sequel.

Anonymous said...

I love the book and think there is a nice twist at the end however it is unrealistic that people can fall in love without much intimacy but then again these books are called fantasy for a reason. I'm really looking forward to the sequel does anyone know when it's out??