Once upon a time, there was a girl named Alice who lived with her mother. They had no one home but many. They stayed with friends on couches and in space rooms always leaving when bad luck caught up to them.
One day her mother, Ella, got an email saying her mother was dead. She said to Alice, “We’re free.” But she didn’t say from what.
Time passed and they settled in Brooklyn. Ella met a man and married. They moved in with him and his daughter. Now Ella had a step sister and a stepfather. She went to private school and worked in a coffee shop.
Then one day Alice returned home only to perceive that things weren’t quite right. Her mother has gone missing, kidnapped. The best clue she gets is a message from her mother saying not to go to the Hazel Wood, her grandmother’s estate. Alice seeks help reluctantly from a classmate who is also a somewhat enthusiastic fan of her grandmother’s writing, Tales from the Hinterland, a collection of faith tales. Finch agrees to help her for his own reasons. Together they head for Hazel Wood. What follows is a dark fairy tale journey as they seek her mother. It will take them to Hazel Wood and beyond.
I have this book 4 stars out of 5. I really enjoyed the writing and the story. I liked Alice, faults and all. No one is perfect. This is not a retelling, but an original. If you like fairy tales with some darkness like the original Brothers Grimm, then this would be a good book for you.
An excerpt from the beginning of the book is here on Entertainment Weekly. There will be a sequel to this book as well as an edition of Tales from the Hinterland according to Goodreads.
The Hazel Wood was released January 30, 2018 from Flatiron Books.
I received a copy of this book through a giveaway on Goodreads. This is an honest, uninfluenced review.