The Hallowed Ones by Laura Bickle: review

The Hallowed Ones (The Hallowed Ones, #1)The Hallowed Ones by Laura Bickle

Series: The Hallowed Ones #1

My rating: 4.5 out of 5 Stars

Age Group: Young Adult

Genre: Paranormal, Thriller, Horror

Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

Release Date: September 25th 2012

Synopsis: Katie is on the verge of her Rumspringa, the time in Amish life when teenagers can get a taste of the real world. But the real world comes to her in this dystopian tale with a philosophical bent. Rumors of massive unrest on the “Outside” abound. Something murderous is out there. Amish elders make a rule: No one goes outside, and no outsiders come in. But when Katie finds a gravely injured young man, she can’t leave him to die. She smuggles him into her family’s barn—at what cost to her community?

My thoughts: I read The Hallowed Ones for one reason: I was promised Amish vampires. I did indeed get Amish vampires but I also got a well written story, a great female protagonist, a great male protagonist, a good look into how the Amish live, classic vampires, gore, and a whole lot of suspense.

I don’t have much knowledge about the Plain Folk and their way of life but the good amount of information this novel contains seems very accurate. I at first thought that book would be a bit overly preachy but I found that the religious tone in this book is anything but that. It was very interesting to learn more about the Plain Folk’s religion. I think that the creepy atmosphere mostly comes from how the book mixes a supposedly very peaceful and conservative way of life with something as dangerous and ugly as vampires.

I loved the vampires. The vampires in The Hallowed Ones are the classic vampires. They have fangs, a thirst for blood,  a weakness to garlic, and glowing red eyes. You will find no Edwards in this book. Although the first half of the book is pretty peaceful with almost no gore the second half has a lot of it: torn up dead bodies, staking through the heart, and decapitation. The horror, gore, and classic vampires were able to scare me and that was really refreshing.

Katie was my favorite part of the book.I was completely emotionally invested in her. She is not at all weak and submissive but rather courageous, fearless, strong, kind, and kick butt. She has her flaws and struggles with the problems many teenagers go through but she perseveres. Katie is able to question other people and do what she thinks is right even if it means standing up to the Elders and going against what her family wishes. She is simply an inspiring character. Alex was also able to win my heart. His slow developing romance with Katie was unexpected but they were very well suited for each other. I liked how the romance only plays a small part of the story letting the vampires take the stage.

The story was very well written and gripping. The Hallowed Ones was suspenseful and I was constantly on the edge of my seat. This book was clearly written by an experienced writer. The ending wrapped up the story nicely but also leaves a promise of future books which I am very, very excited for.

Waiting On Wednesday(5)

Ink (The Paper Gods, #1)Ink by Amanda Sun

Publisher: Harlequin Teen

Expected Publication Date: June 25th 2013

Synopsis: 

I looked down at the paper, still touching the tip of my shoe. I reached for it, flipping the page over to look.

Scrawls of ink outlined a drawing of a girl lying on a bench.

A sick feeling started to twist in my stomach, like motion sickness.

And then the girl in the drawing turned her head, and her inky eyes glared straight into mine.

On the heels of a family tragedy, the last thing Katie Greene wants to do is move halfway across the world. Stuck with her aunt in Shizuoka, Japan, Katie feels lost. Alone. She doesn’t know the language, she can barely hold a pair of chopsticks, and she can’t seem to get the hang of taking her shoes off whenever she enters a building.

Then there’s gorgeous but aloof Tomohiro, star of the school’s kendo team. How did he really get the scar on his arm? Katie isn’t prepared for the answer. But when she sees the things he draws start moving, there’s no denying the truth: Tomo has a connection to the ancient gods of Japan, and being near Katie is causing his abilities to spiral out of control. If the wrong people notice, they’ll both be targets.

Katie never wanted to move to Japan—now she may not make it out of the country alive.

Why I need this book: Because it takes place in Japan and it contains Japanese Gods.

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking The Spine. The purpose of this meme is to showcase upcoming releases that you are really excited about.