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Condition: Used: Very Good
Comment: Pages are crisp and clean. Former library book, in nice shape. Marked as withdrawn. Protective mylar cover. Library stickers on front, spine, back and inside cover. Library name stamped on top outside of pages.
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The Darkest Part of the Forest Hardcover – January 13, 2015

4.4 out of 5 stars 226 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 8 Up—Fairfold is no ordinary town. Its citizens live in uneasy détente with the surrounding forest's magical Folk. Like most residents, siblings Hazel and Ben fear and desire the magic that hovers just out of reach. The Fae gifted Ben with a supernatural musical ability that he cannot control. Hazel's own bargain with the Folk causes her many sleepless nights. Fairfold's fragile equilibrium tips when Hazel frees imprisoned Prince Severin, setting in motion a war with Severin's father, the Faerie king. Hazel and Ben will have to confront long-buried secrets if they want their town to survive. Once again, Black examines the intersection between self-reliance and guilt. Neither Hazel nor Ben nor Hazel's love interest, Jack, can combat the Faerie attack until they reveal their secret desires, often transformed and augmented by Folk magic. Black deeply embeds these conflicts in her story, but anecdotes and flashbacks pull readers away from present action, curiously slowing the pacing into a dreamlike holding pattern. Action scenes pepper the story, but the author's detailed world-building continually restrains the pace. Lush settings juxtapose the wild, alien nature of Faerie against the normalcy of mortal existence. Familiar tropes like Hazel's romance with changeling Jack and her conflict with the Faerie king will not surprise readers much, although Ben's crush on Prince Severin provides interest. While not Black's best, it is still better than most teen fantasy. Pair with the faster-paced "Modern Faerie Tales" (S. & S.), or, for a satisfying slow build and dense setting, try Robin McKinley's novels.—Caitlin Augusta, Stratford Library Association, CT

Review

A Kids' Indie Next List Book of the Year
An ALSC Notable Book for Children
A YALSA Best Fiction for Young Adults
A YALSA Quick Pick for Reluctant Young Adult Readers


"Lush settings juxtapose the wild, alien nature of Faerie against the normalcy of mortal existence."―School Library Journal

*"Black returns here to the dark faery realm that spurred her initial success, and if anything, she's only gotten better, writing with an elegant, economical precision and wringing searing emotional resonance from the simplest of sentences."―The Bulletin, starred review

*"Black returns to the realm of faerie for her latest novel, and the results, as any of her fans would expect, are terrific."―VOYA, starred review

"Black's stark, eerie tone; propulsive pacing; and fulsome world building will certainly delight her legion of fans."―Booklist

"This edgy, dark fantasy will be a hit with young adults who like their magical creatures to live in a recognizably contemporary world."―Library Media Connection

"Like a true fairy tale, Black's story weds blinding romance and dark terrors, but her worthy heroes are up to the challenge of both."―The Horn Book

"It's an enjoyable read with well-developed characters and genuine chills...."―Publishers Weekly
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers (January 13, 2015)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316213071
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316213073
  • Product Dimensions: 6.5 x 1.2 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (226 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #49,845 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
This is my new favorite Holly Black book. This book has been on my 2015 Most Anticipated To Read Lists, and it definitely lived up to the hype I had hoped it would. The Darkest Part of the Forest is a story I loved. Holly Black's writing is engaging, and easily lured me into this enchanting, dark world where humans and fae exist.

Holly Black and the fae world are a match made in YA awesomeness. No one can write fae like she can. She has this ability to make them alluring, but she doesn't go all Hollywood with them. Meaning she's doesn't overly glamorizing them. True to the tales about fae, they are just as beautiful, as they are creepy looking. Being creatures of the woods, Black describes them just as I had imagined they would look. I felt that I would have thought the same things about them, as Hazel did. There is more to them than just their looks.

As Hazel finds out, the fae are also cunning, dangerous, and are known to have a way with words. Though they can't lie, there can be a double meaning in their words. Things may not be done as one perceives things to happen, as Hazel realizes. Once you make a deal with them, they uphold their end of the bargain and excerpt nothing less from Hazel. Though the fae are cunning, Hazel proves she can be just as cunning as they are. I loved what she does towards the end of the book. If you guessed that I am not going to say what that is, then you would be right. I'm keeping this a spoiler free review. I'll just say that Hazel proves she can hold her own with the Fae.

One of the things I like about Holly Black's characters, is that all of them are broken in some way. Which translates to, they're all relatable on some level. I like that they're flawed, and imperfect.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
What a queer, queer book. I am not quite sure how to begin this review. Hell, I'm not even sure how I would categorize this book. Is this a fairytale? Well, yes, it does have some fairytale aspects. Is this fantasy? Um yes, but not in the "slay the dragon and find the rings" sort of way. Is this about character development? Yes, that too, it's a bit of a coming of age story. Is there a mystery? Yep. Romance? Yep. Oh, and did I mention all of this takes place in the modern world in a quaint little town named Fairfold?

This book was so bizarre it was strangely satisfying. I loved the whole setting of Fairfold...it kind of reminds me of the town in The Scorpio Races (can't think of the name right now). I think setting and world building was probably one of my favorite aspects of The Darkest Part of the Forest. Holly Black has a vivid imagination that translates well onto paper. And mind you, these aren't nice fairies you're dealing with--these are cruel, manipulative faes.

Much of the book is told from Hazel's point of view, with a few chapters from Ben's (her brother) and the "the horned boy". I really enjoyed Hazel's character--she grew up on a healthy diet of fairytales splashed with reality. Somehow, she managed to maintain that wonder as she grew into her teen years, though she does develop a sense of cynicism as well.

I guess I should also mention there's a lot of flashbacks going on--so readers who despise them, be warned! I personally didn't mind the flashbacks for most part, because they revealed more about the characters. I only got annoyed when the flashbacks got a bit too long (so over 2 pages, by my books.)

Okay, last but not least: the plot. The plot the plot the plot....
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Format: Hardcover
It’s easy to see why Holly Black is considered one of the best modern YA authors. Despite the fact that many think paranormal fiction is a long overdue fad, she manages to make each of her novels feel fresh and exciting. The Darkest Part Of The Forest reads like a Grimm fairytale; it’s magical, immersive and deliciously creepy. I remember feeling overcome with the same sense of wonder while reading DPotF, as when I had read Black’s Spiderwick Chronicles years ago; in a way this is Spiderwick for more mature readers.

The boy in the coffin has always been apart of Fairfold and it’s mysterious history. The residents know that faeries exist, but that they refuse to get involved in their seedy world of danger. Ben and Hazel have both always been in love with the boy in the coffin, spending hours in the forest with his lifeless body. When the boy in the coffin goes missing, life in Fairfold becomes topsy-turvy.

You instantly feel the tension and danger in TDPoTF because the setting is so atmospheric and real that it almosts feels like a main character. There is so much back-story about Fairfold that readers will feel like they’re familiar with this locale and they’ll never want to leave the forest. Even when I knew the forest was full of unspeakable perils, I was still caught up in the allure of the fae and wanted to be within their grasp.

The fairies in this novel are the classic cold, calculating figures we know, but at the same time they’re completely original and an invention of Black’s mind. You’ll love them and despite them all within a few pages and it’s admirable how in-depth their characters are.

The Darkest Part Of The Forest is a slow, gorgeous and lyrical novel that I really enjoyed reading right from the start.
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