Well, this is a hell of a book....
Young Adult, fantasy
released September 21, 2010
If you want creepy, goosebump inducing and a little bit of teenage angst, this is the book for you.
Cover - Look at this cover! When I first received the book, I thought the cover was very horrific, I wondered why there were sharp instruments hanging like a mobile over the pram...then after reading the book I understood. There is a reason for this - to keep the baby-traders away. It totally fits the novel, along with the stark and gray background. One of the best covers ever for a young adult book - no dramatic face shot with pouty lips...I love this cover.
Until The Replacement, I haven't ever read a book written from the point of view of a changeling (of the fair folk). It's an interesting concept, and not only does Ms Yovanoff write a changeling, but she gives us a teenage boy changeling - with all the mixed up feelings and desires that a young teen male can experience. Not only THAT, but this story is also about acceptance....and avoidance.
The town of Gentry has been dealing with changelings for years, and Mack is the only changeling that has survived to be a teen. No one talks about it...I don't want to give too much away by saying more. This story gave me goosebumps and chills. There are some seriously creepy moments, woven in with the anger and resentment that some of the characters feel. One of my favorite moments is when a friend of Mack's (a girl) gets in a fight with another girl....getting hit and bloodied just makes her more determined to win the fight. For some reason, I love those kind of scenes...(bloodthirsty? Me? come-on...LOL).
Anyway, the basic premise of this book is that Mackie is a changeling left in a crib to replace a baby stolen 16 years ago. This happens regularly in Gentry, only no one admits it. But usually, the replacements only last a few years. Mackie has lasted 16 years and his family has grown to not only accept him, but to love him. Unfortunately, Mackie doesn't realize how much his family loves him (something that a lot of teens have a problem with). When the book opens, Mackie is feeling pretty rotten. He's in pain, weak and feels like he's slowly dying. The replacements don't usually last as long as Mackie has because they all have allergies to blood, iron, and church grounds (consecrated areas). Mackie's father also happens to be a preacher.
Things come to a head when Mackie's sister tries to help him by getting help from a fae, and at the same time the girl I previously mentioned, Tate, doesn't believe that the baby sister who has recently died is really her sister.....
I recommend this book to anybody who likes a chilling fairy tale. There's just a few instances of kissing and one makeout session, a few mentions of blood and gory things, and yet the whole book had this creepy, scary feel to it. It's a great book to read around Halloween. The narrative is from Mackie's pov (first person) and the dialogue between the characters feels real. The dialogue from the Fae was good, arrogant and believably threatening. It's a good all-round novel.
young adult reading challenge
speculative fiction reading challenge