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The Darkest Part of the Forest

Cover of The Darkest Part of the Forest

The Darkest Part of the Forest

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In the woods is a glass coffin. It rests on the ground, and in it sleeps a boy with horns on his head and ears as pointed as knives....
Hazel and her brother, Ben, live in Fairfold, where humans and the Folk exist side by side. Tourists drive in to see the lush wonders of Faerie and, most wonderful of all, the horned boy. But visitors fail to see the danger.
Since they were children, Hazel and Ben have been telling each other stories about the boy in the glass coffin, that he is a prince and they are valiant knights, pretending their prince would be different from the other faeries, the ones who made cruel bargains, lurked in the shadows of trees, and doomed tourists. But as Hazel grows up, she puts aside those stories. Hazel knows the horned boy will never wake.
Until one day, he does....
As the world turns upside down, Hazel has to become the knight she once pretended to be. But as she's swept up in new love, with shifting loyalties and the fresh sting of betrayal, will it be enough?
The Darkest Part of the Forest, is the bestselling author Holly Black's triumphant return to the opulent, enchanting faerie tales that launched her YA career.
In the woods is a glass coffin. It rests on the ground, and in it sleeps a boy with horns on his head and ears as pointed as knives....
Hazel and her brother, Ben, live in Fairfold, where humans and the Folk exist side by side. Tourists drive in to see the lush wonders of Faerie and, most wonderful of all, the horned boy. But visitors fail to see the danger.
Since they were children, Hazel and Ben have been telling each other stories about the boy in the glass coffin, that he is a prince and they are valiant knights, pretending their prince would be different from the other faeries, the ones who made cruel bargains, lurked in the shadows of trees, and doomed tourists. But as Hazel grows up, she puts aside those stories. Hazel knows the horned boy will never wake.
Until one day, he does....
As the world turns upside down, Hazel has to become the knight she once pretended to be. But as she's swept up in new love, with shifting loyalties and the fresh sting of betrayal, will it be enough?
The Darkest Part of the Forest, is the bestselling author Holly Black's triumphant return to the opulent, enchanting faerie tales that launched her YA career.
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Copies-
  • Available:
    2
  • Library copies:
    2
Levels-
  • ATOS:
    5.7
  • Lexile:
  • Interest Level:
    UG
  • Text Difficulty:
    4

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About the Author-
  • Holly Black is the bestselling author of contemporary fantasy novels for teens and children, including Tithe: A Modern Faerie Tale and the #1 New York Times bestselling Spiderwick series. She has been a finalist for the Mythopoeic Award and the Eisner Award, and the recipient of the Andre Norton Award. Holly lives in Massachusetts with her husband, Theo, in a house with a secret library. Her website is www.blackholly.com.
Reviews-
  • DOGO Books happyapples_14 - sounds amazing !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  • Publisher's Weekly

    November 3, 2014
    Fairfold is a contemporary American town long beset by fairies. This isn’t a secret—rather it’s a tourist attraction that provides the citizens with a healthy source of income (although the visitors do occasionally get eaten by the more dangerous fairies). Hazel, a local high school student, is in love with the town’s biggest tourist attraction, a fairy prince who has slept for generations in a glass coffin in the forest. In this, she has a friendly rivalry going with her gay brother, Ben, who also loves the sleeping prince. Things have been unbalanced in Fairfold ever since a mortal woman refused to
    return a changeling—who grew up to be Hazel and Ben’s friend Jack—to the fairies. Now even Fairfold natives are being attacked, and after someone frees the sleeping prince, Hazel rediscovers her
    secret debt to the fairies. Close in tone
    to some of Charles de Lint’s work, it’s an enjoyable read with well-developed characters and genuine chills, though perhaps not as original as Black’s earlier supernatural excursions. Ages 12–up Agent: Barry Goldblatt, Barry Goldblatt Literary.

  • Kirkus

    October 15, 2014
    Black returns to her faerie roots with a fantasy set in our very recognizable modern world. Hazel lives in Fairfold, a small town in a haunted forest full of the Folk. Brother Ben's best friend is a changeling; local kids party by the glass coffin containing a horned boy who has slept for generations. Ben himself has magical musical powers, and he and Hazel used to hunt bad Folk when they were kids. But that was before they grew apart and started keeping secrets, before Hazel kissed Ben's first boyfriend (and lots of boys since). Now a monster menaces the town, and the horned boy is awake. Black clearly knows her lore, and the broad strokes intrigue, but somehow the pieces never jell. Hazel is a series of cliches dressed in outfits described with a little too much precision, a broken girl making out with boys to dull the pain, dreaming of heroics. But there's no depth; the parental neglect and secrets are so past tense that they lack urgency (and the parents, mysteriously, are now fine). When it turns out Hazel is indeed special, too many plot threads are flying for her journey to carry the novel. In the end, Black's latest seems to mirror Hazel's fears about herself-"as normal and average as any child ever born"-but like Hazel, it's not without charm. (Fantasy. 13 & up)

    COPYRIGHT(2014) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • School Library Journal

    October 1, 2014

    Gr 8 Up-Fairfold is no ordinary town. Its citizens live in uneasy detente with the surrounding forest's magical Folk. Like most residents, siblings Hazel and Ben fear and desire the magic that hovers just out of reach. The Fae gifted Ben with a supernatural musical ability that he cannot control. Hazel's own bargain with the Folk causes her many sleepless nights. Fairfold's fragile equilibrium tips when Hazel frees imprisoned Prince Severin, setting in motion a war with Severin's father, the Faerie king. Hazel and Ben will have to confront long-buried secrets if they want their town to survive. Once again, Black examines the intersection between self-reliance and guilt. Neither Hazel nor Ben nor Hazel's love interest, Jack, can combat the Faerie attack until they reveal their secret desires, often transformed and augmented by Folk magic. Black deeply embeds these conflicts in her story, but anecdotes and flashbacks pull readers away from present action, curiously slowing the pacing into a dreamlike holding pattern. Action scenes pepper the story, but the author's detailed world-building continually restrains the pace. Lush settings juxtapose the wild, alien nature of Faerie against the normalcy of mortal existence. Familiar tropes like Hazel's romance with changeling Jack and her conflict with the Faerie king will not surprise readers much, although Ben's crush on Prince Severin provides interest. While not Black's best, it is still better than most teen fantasy. Pair with the faster-paced "Modern Faerie Tales" (S. & S.), or, for a satisfying slow build and dense setting, try Robin McKinley's novels.-Caitlin Augusta, Stratford Library Association, CT

    Copyright 2014 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

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    Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
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