The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert

“Look until the leaves turn red, sew the worlds up with thread. If your journey’s left undone, fear the rising of the sun.”

I love a story within a story like The Tale of Three Brothers in the Deathly Hallows, I love the imagery it brings. I also really enjoy fairy tales the darker and more twisted the better. The Hazel Wood makes me think of The Book of Lost Things by John Connolly but its years since I read that (I must reread it actually). It brings to mind the series Grimm and Once Upon a Time (which I am now binge watching) so in all I guess you could say I really enjoyed it and I would really desperately like a copy of Tales of the Hinterland.

“Seventeen-year-old Alice and her mother have spent most of Alice’s life on the road, always a step ahead of the strange bad luck biting at their heels. But when Alice’s grandmother, the reclusive author of a 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 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. To retrieve her mother, Alice must venture first to the Hazel Wood, then into the world where her grandmother’s tales began . . .”

I like how the story played out but I felt quite sad for Alice in the end I can’t help feeling like she didn’t get the end she hoped for, it might have been the end she asked for but did it make her happy like she wanted? Does she really belong where she is? It makes a nice change from the picture perfect endings that most fairy tales have. After all life isn’t exactly a fairytale and not everything ends up how you want it.

Great fantastical read, recommended if you like a good story within a story with a bit of the supernatural about it and obviously for fairytale fans.

I received an e-book copy from Penguin through Netgalley for review but I also got a signed hardback copy in this months Fairyloot (which I pay for) so I can read it again. All opinions are my own and I am not paid to give them.

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