The Holy Terror

A possible retreat from goodreads ... though I'm tempted to yell "get off my lawn" at this site's tumblresque-ness. Yes, that's totally a word.

The Thickety: A Path Begins

The Thickety: A Path Begins - J.A. White, Andrea Offermann A fantastically dark tale of witches and magic that might be a bit too disturbing for younger readers. On the other hand, if I was still 10 I'd devour this book much like the Jabenhook gobbles up Death.

After finishing this I was trying to figure out what I could compare this to and both Labyrinth and The Neverending Story came to mind. Not because the stories are similar, but because of the tone. Checking them out as an adult you might wonder why you weren't incredibly creeped out and scared while watching them. Take Artax and the Swamp of Sadness for example; I honestly didn't even remember that scene but when I watched it recently I was a sobbing mess. (I honestly can't even look at screencaps of that scene - google at your own risk!) I think we sometimes forget that a lot of themes go over children's heads and what might bother us as an adult didn't even faze us when we were younger.

I raced through this in pretty much one sitting and was pleasantly surprised at the twists and turns it took. This is a very smartly written book without overly flowery prose that still manages to be quite magical. There is a surprising amount of death and darkness in this story but there's also some great lessons taught. Grief casts a veil over Kara, the main character, throughout the story and it often made my heart ache. Her father was a surprising source of empathy, and her brother, Taff, was a much needed light in all of the darkness. I want to complain about Kara's tormentor, Grace, being the quintessential mean popular pretty girl, but she was fascinating and multi-demensional: not the one-note bully most villains end up being.

It's quite possible that many might pass this up because it looks like it's written for kids, but believe me when I say this is an excellent story that readers of any age would love. If you're a parent you might want to read it first, but for everyone else, pick up this book the next time you're in the mood for some wild dark fantasy.

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