Thursday, April 5, 2012

The Hollow of Mont Noir by Jennifer Krey

Genre:  YA Paranormal Romance
Howl Series, Book 1

Description (taken from Goodreads):
Allison Spencer was no stranger to the paranormal. An animal empath, she had the unique capacity to sense the feelings of animals around her - an ability she liked to call "Crittervision." She had never met anyone else with unusual powers and had gotten used to the fact that she was just an eccentric in a world full of normal people.

Allison lived an otherwise ordinary life and was looking forward to finishing high school along with her friends and her boyfriend in her hometown of Ocean City, Maryland. But when her older brother, Logan, suddenly disappeared from a small college town near the Adirondack Mountains in upstate New York, Allison's entire world was turned upside down.

Logan still hadn't been found after several months, so Allison's parents decided to move the family to the Hollow of Mont Noir, New York to look for him themselves. In addition to leaving behind her home and her friends and being dumped by her boyfriend, Allison suddenly had to deal with life in a small town, a strange creature that seemed to be stalking her, a new school full of cliques and cattiness, parents who were preoccupied with her missing brother, and an illogical fascination with an outcast boy who didn't talk to anyone at school.

As Allison settled into her new home, she began to realize that not everything - and everyone - was what they seemed. She soon learned of the existence of supernatural creatures living side-by-side with humans and was faced with a whole new set of questions - and some shocking answers - about herself and her family.

Oh the horrors of moving from one city to another right before starting your senior year in high school. Trust me when I say it isn't fun (because I've experienced it).  However, I've never experienced moving for the purpose of locating a missing brother.  Regardless, I thought this quirky tale was a great read!

The beginning starts out a little slow because we're receiving a lot of background knowledge that kind of explains what Allison's family believes happened to Logan and how it's caused them to end up in Mont Noir.  Allison's life is just like the average teenager's life, and I enjoyed reliving the new-girl-high-school experience (and I'm glad it wasn't me reliving it).  Allison meets some interesting characters, but there's one boy that pretty much draws Allison's (and therefore the reader's) attention.  I loved the mystery surrounding Riordan and the romance that sparks between the two.  And then we get the added bonus of paranormalness, and I really enjoyed how it played out.  The only question I was left with is what caused Riordan to be so attracted to Allison.  And maybe the beauty's in the mystery or maybe there's some underlying reason that we find out about later (or maybe I'm just a little too caught up in this tiny portion of the story).

If you liked Twilight, then you'll most definitely enjoy this read.  I imagine those that liked Shiver might like this as well (I wasn't a huge fan of Shiver, so I might be wrong).  It's a good paranormal romance with a happy ending.  And I'm glad there will be a second one coming.

Let me leave you with a quote from the book that I absolutely loved:
Hope is a vampire, relentless and evil.
It slowly sucks the life out of you while it lives on, 
lurking in the shadows, waiting to feast on your soul.  
     -Hollow of Mont Noir, p 3

Thanks goes to Jennifer Krey for providing me a review copy of this book.

Challenges:  Debut Author Challenge and Young Adult Reading Challenge

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