(((Read E-pub))) ☠ The Hazel Wood ↾ PDF eBook or Kindle ePUB free

It s time for another unpopular opinion review This book was literally the single biggest reading disappointment of the year for me I really wanted to love this story It was being marketed as a twisted fairytale, and those are my aesthetic for sure the spookier and darker, the better but this fell short in so many ways Please remember that these are just my opinions You are than welcome to disagree or tell me your thoughts, but please do so respectfullyI wanted that distance I wanted that uncaring, here s your blood and guts and your fucked up happy ending fairy tale voicegenre marketing writing Marketing led me to believe that this was going to be the typical high fantasy world we see in fairytales My first disappointment was in learning that the setting was modern day New York, and the first half of the book straddled the line between contemporary and urban fantasy, at best.The story doesn t pick up as an actual fantasy tale until after the halfway mark, and when it does, the writing immediately becomes much less enjoyable Anyone who knows my reading tastes knows I love flowery prose, but many of the descriptions in the fantasy half of this book go far past flowery, straight through whimsical, and land smack dab in nonsense I did get it, I did And the shame of it boiled into something darker Before my brain could catch up, I jerked the wheel and turned the car off the road, sending us rattling toward the trees. Alice Let me put it this way The Hazel Wood is my 200th read of 2017, and there have only been two narrators out of the entire other 199 titles that held a candle to how terrible Alice is She starts the book off poorly, rambling about her anger issues without giving us any reason as to why she s talking about them As it progresses, she expresses actual, unwarranted physical violence towards other characters including attempting to kill them via vehicular manslaughter because she feels guilty for her own poor choices.She shouts and snaps constantly, has no respect for anyone besides her mother , and judges everyone she meets hyper critically Her judgmental nature even borders on ableism when she meets a character who has been driven to a broken mental state by entering the Hazel Wood Alice has several internal monologues about how little she trusts the woman s hygiene and the state of the woman s home s cleanliness, solely because she doesn t deem the woman sane enough.Even when she enlists the help of Finch, she is incessantly rude, critical, and offensive towards him When she is finally called out on her offensive nature, she deflects, makes excuses, and has a general disregard for any harm she has caused In one scenario, when he remarks on her misogynistic speech, her actual comeback is,Oh, my god, Finch, go get a liberal arts degreeI read this three times in hopes of making sense of it before deciding that she learned her snark from old men in facebook comment threads.Beyond all of the ways in which Alice s character is incredibly harmful and is rarely if ever challenged for most of her behaviors, she s also just not well written She s hypocritical, self contradicting, and outrightboringMaybe Finch wasn t trying to be the sidekick in my story Maybe he was trying to start one of his own. Finch Finch is introduced in a way that gave me actual optimism for the story he s a classmate of hers who is kind and welcoming, seeks her friendship, and offers to face certain danger to help her find the Hazel Wood and her mother Unfortunately, my optimism started to falter when I learned that Finch, the single black character in the story in New York City, no less , is commented on multiple times as being unattractive and a waste of wealth never challenged.That was the first red flag in a book with no commentary on anyone else s features, the single person of color is the only unattractive one but it worsens when Finch, despite being a very present figure throughout the story, is never fleshed out He feels incredibly one dimensional from start to finish, though some of this may just be to blame on Alice s refusal to let him speak for than thirty seconds without telling him to shut up.It felt like there was some small attempt to have a dialogue on racism and privilege when Finch talks to Alice about being afraid of racial profiling, but it s thrown away when Alice immediately insinuates that his father s wealth negates any racism he faces, and then further derails the conversation every time he tries to speak to her about it By the end of the book, I resigned myself to the feeling that Finch was, in every shape and form, a Token Black Character His entire character arc felt so bad to read fairytales Literally the only redeeming aspect of this book, for me, was the occasional time when we would get to hear one of Althea s tales Sadly, they re incredibly few and far between I think we only got two full tales in the entire book I enjoyed those stories, and would probably read a bind up of them, but within the context of the entire book, they weren t enough to salvage it FINAL THOUGHTS This book was just a total disaster from start to finish for me, and the only reason I didn t DNF it at the 40% mark was because I was so desperately hoping it would improve by the end I would than likely not pick up any future books by Melissa Albert, and cannot, in good faith, recommend this story to anyone Thank you to Flatiron for providing me with this ARC in exchange for an honest review You can find this review and here on my blog (((Read E-pub))) ↻ The Hazel Wood ↚ De Zeventienjarige Alice Heeft Het Grootste Deel Van Haar Leven Samen Met Haar Moeder Reizend Doorgebracht Om Het Ongeluk Voor Te Blijven Wanneer Haar Oma, Auteur Van Een Duister Sprookjesboek, Op Haar Landgoed Het Hazelwoudoverlijdt En Haar Moeder Wordt Ontvoerd Door Een Figuur Die Zegt Dat Hij Uit Hinterland De Wereld Van Haar Oma S Verhalen Komt, Zit Er Maar N Ding Op Ze Moet Hulp Vragen Aan Super Hinterland Fan Ellery Finch En Afreizen Naar Het Hazelwoud Zal Ze Er Daar Achter Komen Hoe H R Verhaal Begon 4.5 Thoughts tk at some point when I have time, sorry UPDATE 2.99 Kindle US 12 29 18UP DAMN DATE Here is the Fairyloot Box I told y all I would have both of my subscription boxes with the same book As usual, look for the link under the picture BOOKISH STUFF FROM FAIRYLOOTThis OWLCRATE picture is crap y all Don t ask, but as usual, click on the link below picture to see the unboxing some other surprises BOOKISH STUFFWell, there are not that many great reviews for this on my friends list So let s see how it goes I think I jinxed it I just wasn t feeling it and that makes me sad But, we can t love them all I did enjoy the character of Finch, he was my favorite Hi, I said, flustered I was on my way home from work My shirt was covered in scone crumbs and my hair was spiked with sweat You smell like a coffee bean, he said when we reached the corner It s awesome He glanced back at the restaurant, his face so full of regret I almost laughed Okay, I better get back Back to stabbing your dessert His smile reached his eyes then, just for a moment A flicker of light on dark water Then he swung around and walked back up the sidewalk I m sure people will love the book There seems to be a ton of people on that love it already so there is that Anyway, on to the next Happy Reading Mel MY BLOG Melissa Martin s Reading List REVIEW ARC provided by Flatiron Books in exchange for an honest review.Once upon a time there was a beautiful queen who thought words were stronger than anything She used them to win love and money and gifts She used them to carry her across the worldLet me just start this off by saying that I normally only one star something if it has very problematic content This book only has one element that made me uncomfortable that I will talk about later on , but the main reason I m giving this one star is because it was so ungodly boring Next, and this could be completely my fault, I feel like this is marketed as a YA Fantasy, when it takes the reader almost 250 pages, out of a 360 page book, to even get into the fantasy aspect and by that time I couldn t care less about some pseudo Alice in Wonderland This reads like a YA Contemporary Mystery and that is not a genre that I enjoy reading in the slightest, so maybe that is the main reason this didn t work for me So the basic premise of The Hazel Wood is that a seventeen year old girl named Alice has been on the run with her mother, Ella, for as long as she can remember They go from city to city, house to house, sometimes sleeping in their car, always on the run from the bad luck that follows them Alice s grandmother, Ella s mother, is a very famous author who wrote a collection of short stories that are incredibly hard to find in today s world The short stories are very dark fairytales, that have netted her grandmother a very cult like fanbase that totally gave me some Nightfilm vibes if I m being completely honest Alice has never met her grandmother, and she s never visited the exclusive estate she lives on called the Hazel Wood But after Alice s mother is kidnapped, she is desperate to find any means possible to finally visit the mysterious estate and to get her mother back once and for all But this book was so incredibly slow I had to bribe myself with chocolates to even finish it This is a 360 page book, and it took me SEVENTEEN days to read it That s a little over 20 pages a day And that s honestly all I could do, because I was so uninvested And it s actually mindboggling to me that this book is even 360 pages long, because I feel like everything could have taken place in 150 200 pages, too And Alice is such an unlikeable main character that isn t supposed to be an unlikeable main character She s so rude, and self centered, and unable to recognize her privilege because she can t get over the fact that she grew up poor She talks over people, and is demanding, and refuses to acknowledge her mistakes I could never and will never connect with her, and it was honestly miserable to be inside of her head.So, the problematic element is the treatment of the biracial side character who Alice spends most of the book with Finch is the only person of color in this book, and Alice constantly remarks on how unattractive he is, and it feels really bad Then, when they get into an altercation with a police officer, Finch tries to explain to Alice about racial profiling and how he feels uncomfortable being around cops and being noncompliant around cops, while Alice just completely disregards his very valid feelings by saying he s rich and privileged Like that negates the color of his skin and the racism he faces every single day because of it, because she grew up poor and on the run with her mom On top of the fact that Alice will never let Finch speak, because she s always interrupting and talking over him It just reads badly and made my very uncomfortable while reading Also, Alice even got physically abusive a couple times and I just wasn t there for it at all The other minor thing that just made me feel a little uncomfortable while reading was that this book kind of romanticizes kidnapping Like, Alice has very fond memories of being kidnapped when she was six and it feels almost like glorifying it Maybe this just rubbed me the wrong way because I was always deathly afraid of being kidnapped as a child, but I didn t enjoy reading her memories on kidnapping whatsoever, either.And the last thing is that the deus ex machina in this book is very strong So many things just so conveniently happened, especially at the end of this book when we are finally in a fairytale land, to wrap up this story The only thing I truly liked about this book were the two chapters that were stories that Finch was retelling to Alice from inside her Grandmother s book,Tales from the Hinterland Both of these were honestly great, and I enjoyed them immensely and it showcased that the author does have talent for writing Unfortunately, this is only two chapters of a thirty one chapter book But both of those short stories were good and I enjoyed each one than the rest of this entire book combinedAlso, have you seen the finished copy of this With its foil sprayed pages Holy moly, it s honestly one of the most beautiful books I ve ever laid eyes upon But you all know what they say about judging books by their covers This book just wasn t for me or my tastes We aren t even in 2018 yet and I can tell you that this will 100% make my most disappointing publications of 2018 list And from all my friends reviews, I truly think this is going to just be a polarizing book People are going to hate and dread picking it up, or they are going to be completely engrossed, love, and devour it And you guys know that just because I disliked this book, it doesn t mean that your feelings are invalid If you liked this book then I am truly happy for you, but this book just really didn t work for me And if you do decide to pick this one up, I hope you find way enjoyment within its pages than I did Content warnings for underage alcohol consumption, drug use, self harm, talk of suicide, and mild violence Blog Twitter Tumblr Instagram Youtube Twitch The quote above was taken from an ARC and is subject to change upon publication.Buddy read with Jenn This was in the February 2018 OwlCrate box Holy Hinterland crows, that was good Read this at night, with a cup of tea and the lights dimmed so you can be scared silly like I was D D 3 Stars Not my favorite book I ve ever read, but still enjoyable.I don t have particularly strong feelings about this book The writing was fine The characters were okay The world was probably the most interesting element of the story, but nothing amazing in my opinion I really enjoyed how the story takes place in modern day New York City and the fairytale elements are hidden beneath I found the fairytales whimsical elements of the story to be it s strongest point I genuinely enjoyed my time listening to this story on audiobook, but I don t feel it has many incredible aspects Additionally, I did lose focus nearing the end of the story Stories became jumbled and it left me feeling as if the ending has less impact than it intended to.I find one of the biggest critiques of this novel is that the main character, Alice, is immensely rude, disrespectful, hyper critical and ill tempered which is 100% true That being said, her personality behavior is integral to the story and does have a purpose, so it didn t bother me all that much Given, every time Alice made an effort to point out her rage issues , I totally rolled my eyes, but it didn t make me significantly frustrated than other unlikeable main characters I understand the valid criticisms of how Alice treats the only person of color in the story because that was a bit off putting than her other traits There is a scene where Finch, a biracial character, tries to calmly explain why Alice provoking a police officer in his company can be dangerous and Alice completely brushes off his concerns, trivializing the racism he experiences because he comes from money It was obvious to me that this scene was intended to be a lesson in privilege and we were meant to side with Finch, but as it is from Alice s perspective and there is no correction of her behavior on her part, her voice is dominant so I can completely see the flaws in execution of this scene It was just messy I will also mention that I actually enjoyed the fact that this story followed a main character who grew up in poverty and without a stable home Situations like this are not common in YA and it was nice to see a character who constantly moved from place to place, have been kicked out by people they stay with, always on the road and have a parent who is always working odd jobs to make ends meet Alice isn t the worst main character I ve ever read about though she s pretty close to the bottom , but I don t feel much affection for her Finch was by far my favorite character in the story though there aren t many others to choose from and I really wish he had gotten development instead of being constantly pushed off to the side He had great potential, but it didn t really follow through.I did enjoy The Hazel Wood but it s not a very memorable book for me I think the synopsis was so strong and there was so many possibilities for this book to be amazing, but I don t think it followed the strongest route It s just one of those books that I didn t love or hate either, that I had a good time reading, but have distinct critiques than positives to share. Everything was beautiful, and nothing hurt You know those Disney princess fairytales, the ones where the damsel in distress is saved by Prince Charming and they get married and live happily ever after Yeah, this isn t that story Think of the old school Brother s Grimm fairytales, and then imagine something even darker and you ll have a clear picture of what this book holds for you That s not a criticism one of the surest ways to get me to commit to reading a book is to tell me it s an old school fairytale I am a hardcore sucker for these wicked little snippets into an alternate world, and this debut felt like it was written by a seasoned pro with all the bells and whistles you could ask for When Alice was born, her eyes were black from end to end, and the midwife didn t stay long enough to wash her.We re dropped into the story about midway the first few chapters are meant to give us some background on Alice, her mother Ella, and her grandmother Althea Prosperine, who became famous by writing a book of fairytales This book was titled Tales From The Hinterland and it contained a total of twelve brief stories The cool part about The Hazel Wood is that we get to read a couple of these first hand within the story Three Times Alice and The Door That Wasn t There , while also getting brief snippets from most of the rest of them toward the end This aspect was so unique and compelling that I felt a little breathless at the end I wanted every story verbatim I feel like, if the author so chose, she could write Tales From The Hinterland, binding and fully fleshing out all twelve stories in a volume to sell as a companion novel and we the people would EAT IT UP Seriously, please please pretty please So Alice remembers being kidnapped at the age of six by a strange man with red hair claiming to take her to visit her recluse of a grandmother, but she was never harmed and never laid eyes on Althea Strange things begin to happen, such as Alice spotting the mysterious redheaded man a decade after her last sighting of him, her mother and herself receiving a letter stating Althea has passed away, and finally, Ella disappearing under very strange circumstances Alice has no one to turn to other than a recently made acquaintance named Ellery Finch, who is a mega super borderline stalker fan of Althea s work His money and affluent nature allow them to forge a shaky bond and they decide to set off on a journey to do the very thing Alice s mother warned her not to do visit the Hazel Wood Name of Althea Prosperine s vast estate in upstate New York I hated needing something from someone when I had absolutely nothing to offer back You d think, after the upbringing I d had, I d at least be used to it.I wouldn t call Alice a likable character, but she was certainly a compelling lead I felt just as befuddled as she did along this journey I honestly had no clue where this story would take us and was just as shocked as Alice at every twist and turn While there was no sexual content whatsoever in this book at least that I remember , it still made me give pause to what age range this book would be most appropriate for Certainly the older side of the spectrum, as this was disturbing, unsettling, and contained a good bit of graphic violence horror within the stories I was warned many times over about how truly dark this book is, but I didn t think it was something I d blink an eye at, not with all the graphic murder mystery thrillers I read, but this was different I can t quite put my finger on what exactly provoked this sense of unease I felt perhaps it was the not so light way the story was wrapped up There isn t much levity to be found here if you re the type of reader looking for a happy ending you most certainly have come to the wrong place Originally I gave this book 4 stars, but I ve decided to bump it up to a full 5, seeing as it s been almost a full week since I finished it and I cannot stop thinking about it This quirky little novel has been jostling other stories I am currently reading, vying for attention in my head and further pondering, so for that reason, I think I need to give credit where credit is due This book certainly won t be for everyone, but I think the fans of dark fairytales and things that go bump in the night will wholly appreciate the author s ability to conjure up such a complex tale that was detailed and, quite frankly, brilliant Highly recommended Many thanks to the publisher for providing my copy Book 4 in my Nebulous November challenge And while they re being told, stories create the energy that makes this world go They keep our stars in place They make our grass grow You want to read a mysterious, crazily intriguing book, this is it My heart was racing for the first 7 chapters because I had no idea what was going to happen and during the rest because I couldn t wait to see where the Story was going pun intended if you ve read it you ll understand.This is just so AMAZING I don t know how it possible to make something so interesting and addicting I couldn t stop even once, it s crazy really, in the entire book not even one word was boring or out of place I feel like I m going to burst into hysterical laughter if I start talking about it because I can t wait for the next book and I can t accept the fact that the book is over The whole thing was so well planned and the book did justice to the concept which was also great The world itself is written very descriptively which helped picture the very fictional and fantastical world and characters It was so much interesting because nearly every other character had their own agenda and were playing their own angle.In this world, Althea Proserpine was a famous writer who wrote the books Tales of Hinterland This book is an enigma, there are no traces of it online and very few people have read it and those who have read it are borderline addicted to it and Althea, Once this book was published Althea Proserpine moved into an estate called The Hazel Wood and fans all over the world have tried to locate it with no avail And just like that Althea Proserpine was never again seen on the face of the Earth and eventually the theories and rumours died down, but Althea s daughter Ella moved out of The Hazel Wood when she was young and raised her daughter Alice away from anything related to Althea and her fairytales and forbade her from researching or reaching out to Althea But all her life Alice and her mother have been moving from place to place without ever settling down because if they ever stay in one place for too long bad luck just seems to follow them and bring a whole lot of destruction along with it But a few years ago Alice got a letter informing her of Althea Proserpine s death and at that moment onwards she built a stable life for herself and her daughter But now Alice has been taken by someone who claims to be from Hinterland, the very world Althea based all her stories on, which now turns out to be real And if the world is real so must be the stories.The fairytales Althea wrote were not our average fairy tales with happy endings, they were gruesome tales generally with savage endings and characters who held no semblance of humanity Now that Hinterland has proved to be real Alice will have to have navigate a world of the darkest stories in existence to rescue her mother, with the help of Finch who happens to be one of her grandmothers cultish superfans who remembers every story in the book.This book grabbed my attention in the beginning and held it all the way to the end The world within this world is one of the most interesting I have ever read The concept of the Hinterland and the Hazel Wood was written with a lot of clarity which increases the pace of the book Everything about this book dragged me in and the next book has a lot of intrigue to live up to I rate this book 5 stars. this is the first book that has made me think that the author statements praise on the back cover are completely made up i mean, unless i have a defect copy, the fact that stephanie garber, karen mcmanus, seanan mcguire AND jennifer niven all adored this is highly suspicious, because this story is a hot mess.reading this the plot specifically reminded me of every time i have to untangle my headphones it only becomes and of a mess until i get so frustrated and i throw them across the room i thought that if i continued reading, the plot would become clear and make sense, but instead it became muddled and absurd i also had issues with the lack of character development, inconsistent world building, and erratic pacing overall, this is just a really poor execution of an unique, and what was a potentially interesting, story such a shame 2.5 stars