Tuesday, 30 January 2018

The Hazel Wood // an utterly dreamy and creepy tale

The Hazel Wood was utterly dreamy and whisked me away into the bustling city of New York and the eerie forests of the Hinterland.

Alice Prosperpine and her mother never stay in one place too long. Wherever they go, bad luck and peculiar incidences follow them. But when Alice's mother is kidnapped by characters claiming to come from her grandmother's book of dark fairytales, Alice and her friend Ellery Finch run headfirst into the danger, trying to find their way to her grandmother's mysterious estate, the Hazel Wood.

This book reminds me so much of the books I would read when I was younger. It is exciting and mysterious and just a little bit creepy, and it feels like magic is always lurking around the corner. The writing draws you in completely and the story is filled with twists that have you constantly questioning where the characters would turn next. Alice is a complicated and angry character, and made a really compelling lead. I loved how prominent the bond she had with her mother was and how powerful their relationship was. Alice's dynamic with Finch was also brilliant because of how different yet similar they are, and I loved seeing their relationship grow to acknowledge this.

As hooked as I was on the story, in the latter quarter of the book I found it a little difficult to follow what was happening. It didn't subtract from my enjoyment of the book too much, but I'd sometimes get a little lost along the way. But this is very possibly a me thing because I was tired and didn't want to put the book down, and I suspect will be amended when I re-read it!

The Hazel Wood has the perfect balance of character, story, and atmospheric writing that is so easy to fall into, making it addictive on all fronts. Reading it feels like dreaming; it's one of those books that makes the whole world around you disappear, which is a rare thing that should be treasured. I look forward to reading more about where Alice goes next in the sequel, but I will be thinking about this book all the time until then.


YA Fantasy

The Hazel Wood #1 | The Hazel Wood #2 | The Hazel Wood #2.5

violence, cutting, guns, death, blood


  1. i rarely read creepy books so i'm slapping this one onto my tbr :D

    also your photos are so nice whaat

    ~ noor

    1. It's so good I hope you like it! It's not *too* creepy (I don't read a lot of creepy books either) but I think The Hazel Wood is a good place to start.

      Thank you so much Noor!

  2. I have been seeing so many people anticipating this one like crazy, and I am so glad to hear it lives up to expectations! It sounds like the perfect escapism novel, and the creepy eerie element to it sounds like something I would love myself. Brilliant review x

    My recent post: http://oliviascatastrophe.com/2018/01/life-lately-december-january/

    1. Escapism was exactly the word I was looking for! I think it's been pretty hit-or-miss for some people but I think it largely depends on tastes. It totally lived up to the hype for me though! If you read it I hope you enjoy it Olivia! Thank you <3

  3. I heard a lot about this book prior to release but not so much after it was actually published. In fact this is the first review I have read for it! I was never particularly interested in The Hazel Wood before because I have SO many books on my TBR, but now that I know a bit more about I like the sound of it :D Great mother/daughter relationships in YA books gives me LIFE so I am so excited to hear that this book features that! I am also always up for a creepy novel so I think I might have to cave and add this one to the TBR after all, haha. Thank you for the lovely review! <3

    1. I noticed that too actually, which is strange because it's been on the NYT bestseller list for 2 weeks now - people are reading it but not talking about it much for some reason. Which is a shame because it's really good! I wasn't that interested in The Hazel Wood initially either, but it was one of the many instances where I requested it on NetGalley just becuase I could and I'm glad I did! Alice's mum isn't present in a lot of the book but she's in almost all of the flashbacks and clearly an important part in Alice's life which was really great. Also it was a lot creepier than I was expecting! Thanks Chiara!