About the book:
Black Hollow is a town with a dark secret.
For centuries, residents have foretold the return of the Dreamwalker—an ominous figure from local folklore said to lure young women into the woods and possess them. Yet the boundary between fact and fable is blurred by a troubling statistic: occasionally, women do go missing. And after they return, they almost always end up dead.
When Kai wakes up next to the lifeless body of a recently missing girl, his memory blank, he struggles to clear his already threadbare conscience.
Miya, a floundering university student, experiences signs that she may be the Dreamwalker’s next victim. Can she trust Kai as their paths collide, or does he herald her demise?
And after losing a young patient, crestfallen oncologist, Mason, embarks on a quest to debunk the town’s superstitions, only to find his sanity tested.
A maelstrom of ancient grudges, forgotten traumas, and deadly secrets loom in the foggy forests of Black Hollow. Can three unlikely heroes put aside their fears and unite to confront a centuries-old evil? Will they uncover the truth behind the fable, or will the cycle repeat?
I picked up this book on NetGalley mainly because the cover caught my eye and the blurb sounded interesting. And this book was interesting, even though it’s definitely different from my usual fare.
I was fascinated by the folkloric aspects of the story, but must admit that it was also very easy for me to set this book aside in favor of other reads. In fact, I started this book over two months ago, and while it is over four hundred pages long, it usually doesn’t take me that much time to finish a book that I’m invested in. This obviously means I wasn’t very invested in this story.
Not that it wasn’t well-written! Vrana is very obviously well-versed in folklore and myth, and she masterfully created a story brimming with atmosphere. This felt like a fleshed-out version of a campfire story, meant to both entertain and make the listener more aware of the dangers around them.
Unfortunately, it felt a bit too fleshed-out at times for me, as if the climax of the story would never actually arrive, which is likely why I could set it down without fear of missing out.
So for these reasons, I’d probably give it 3.5 stars. (I’m so excited that I just found the star rating thingy that I just have to use it! Too bad it doesn’t do half-stars…) 😉
If folklore and contemporary fantasy is your jam, I would recommend you check out The Hollow Gods by A.J. Vrana. Thanks to BooksGoSocial and NetGalley for the digital copy of this novel for review purposes. I was not required to give a positive review. All opinions are my very own! 🙂