Release Date: October 21, 2014
Genres: Fantasy, Paranormal, YA
Source: Received in exchange for review
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It's an oppressively hot and sticky morning in June when Sterling and her brother, Phin, have an argument that compels him to run into the town swamp -- the one that strikes fear in all the residents of Sticks, Louisiana. Phin doesn't return.
Instead, a girl named Lenora May climbs out, and now Sterling is the only person in Sticks who remembers her brother ever existed.
Sterling needs to figure out what the swamp's done with her beloved brother and how Lenora May is connected to his disappearance -- and loner boy Heath Durham might be the only one who can help her.
This debut novel is full of atmosphere, twists and turns, and a swoon-worthy romance.
No one has seen Phin all day. After having a fight with his sister, Sterling, he stepped foot into the swamp and hasn’t emerged ever since. Everyone knows not to go into the swamp, they say that if you go in, you never come back. Yet later that day, while Sterling is outside underneath the hot beating sun, she see’s someone come out of the swamp, but it’s not her brother. It’s a girl and apparently her sister. Lenora May has always been Sterling’s sister according to everyone but Sterling. Suddenly, no one knows who Phin is, like he never existed, and in his place is Lenora May, the strange girl that emerged from the swamp. Determined to find out what has happened to Phin and why no one remembers him, Sterling might just have to go to the swamp herself.
The things that I liked:
– The atmosphere in Beware the Wild was fantastic. I loved every bit of it and could practically feel the heat of the burning sun and the creepiness and ambiguity of the swamp. And on top of those detailed descriptions? I was feeling pretty skittish and wide-eyed in the end. Seriously guys, this isn’t a swamp you want to go poking your head around at.
Ours is a creature all its own. We don’t stare into its depths and we don’t ever go inside.
– Sterling. She was a quick to love narrator and a very determined girl. I really liked her devotion and strong-will to save her brother from the swamp without acting rash and not thinking before acting. She was an ideal protagonist and the author made her so easy to love. Also, Sterling does a have an eating disorder here, which I appreciated for being addressed, especially by her friends. It just goes to show how great the friendships were as well as they were all constantly looking out for each other.
– The story line is one of the more obvious things I loved. It’s the thing that got me wanting to read this and it still remains one of my favourite aspects of the book. I wanted to know why no one remembered Phin and what had happened to him and why there was a totally random girl in his place.
The things that I didn’t like:
– The romance. The synopsis says there’s a swoon-worthy romance and I absolutely LOVE swoon-worthy romances. Sometimes I go out of my way and read a book just because there’s a swoon-worthy romance. Unfortunately, I didn’t feel any swoons here. Honestly, I didn’t see the connection–apart from the fact that Heath also experienced something similar to Sterling, and could relate with her. That being said, I don’t think the romance dominated the plot that much, so it wasn’t a problem in the sense that it took the attention away from the plot line. Thankfully, the romance wasn’t something that pissed me off or made me want to rage. I guess I was just disappointed that I didn’t get a swoon-worthy or convincing romance, ultimately.
– I got bored for a while during the book. The pacing did stutter here and there a bit for me and I was losing attention. However, it wasn’t a large issue.
Beware the Wild was a intriguing read with a refreshing premise and a brilliant atmosphere and array of characters. I am definitely curious to see what other works this author has to offer!
~Thank you HarperTeen for sending me this copy!~
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