Book Talk: The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert

the hazel woodSeventeen-year-old Alice and her mother have spent most of Alice’s life on the road, always a step ahead of the uncanny bad luck biting at their heels. But when Alice’s grandmother, the reclusive author of a cult-classic book of pitch-dark fairy tales, dies alone on her estate, the Hazel Wood, Alice learns how bad her luck can really get: her mother is stolen away―by a figure who claims to come from the Hinterland, the cruel supernatural world where her grandmother’s stories are set. Alice’s only lead is the message her mother left behind: “Stay away from the Hazel Wood.”

Alice has long steered clear of her grandmother’s cultish fans. But now she has no choice but to ally with classmate Ellery Finch, a Hinterland superfan who may have his own reasons for wanting to help her. To retrieve her mother, Alice must venture first to the Hazel Wood, then into the world where her grandmother’s tales began―and where she might find out how her own story went so wrong.

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*I was given a ARC of this book from the publisher/netgalley in exchanged for an honest review*

3/5 Stars ★★★☆☆

After reading The Hazel Wood, I couldn’t quite decide if I really liked it or if it was just another book I have read. Don’t get me wrong…there are some great things about this book but I wasn’t absolutely blown away by the story. So for this post I decided to write out a few of likes and dislikes for the book and I hope it can help you decide as a reader if you might want to give this book a chance. It comes out tomorrow: January 30, 2018.


  • I enjoyed Alice and her line of thoughts. She was a good main character and was definitely self sufficient. She had that feel to her that she was used to stuff going to crap but she could deal with it. I never felt annoyed with her like I do some main characters…but sometimes it seemed she was totally unobservant.
  •  The Hinterland world. Wow this world was interesting! I enjoyed the different fairytales that were introduced. They were mysterious and a whole different type of story compared to our everyday fairytales. I also liked how they were a little darker then most and the fact that there was a whole other dimension where these stories were played out. I really enjoyed the story when it dealt with the Hinterland and I would read another book in the series if it dealt just with the Hinterland.


  • How long it took to actually get to the fairytale part of the story. I felt like most of the book we as readers were just trying to get to the Hinterland and when we finally got there, the book was almost over. I picked up the book because of this mysterious new fairytales and I almost thought we weren’t going to get there and that there were just flashes of this mysterious land. I was just a little disappointed that most of the story wasn’t in the Hinterland. It felt like to me it was more of a young adult book instead of fantasy.
  • Ellery Finch. I wasn’t really impressed that much with Ellery Finch. I guess I was looking for a bigger character in Ellery. I was really hoping he would be more of either a best friend or love interest but he just seemed a little off most of the story. Maybe that is what the author was going for but in the end, he didn’t make a good impression on me.

Why you might want to pick it up tomorrow: The actual Hinterland was really interesting and the new fairytales were really fun to learn about. As I have said before, if the next book in the series was more about the Hinterland I would more than likely read it. If you like more young adult and just a little bit of fantasy content then this is the book for you.





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