Hazelwood, Alice, Scott discussed on Genre Junkies | Book Reviews
Weirdo Book Worms Unite. We want to share our love of genre fiction with you. Some readers out there may look down on your for your love of horror sci fi and fantasy but not us so stop by as we discuss what we've been reading. Hi everybody this is Sandra this is Scott and where the John Ritter Junkies and we are joined tonight by a very special guest. Who's been on the show numerous times but it's been a minute. Amanda E. Elo Celcom back to the show. Thank you so much. Been away for too long misty guys. All we miss you do and I know you've read some of the books we have We picked this one tonight to talk about because it was a highly anticipated Follow up we all read. The first book suggest celestial no like we're we're socially distancing still Silla Manda Zonda on the call so If she sounds like she's not in the same s because she's not no no no no but we wish you were were was well okay enough with the sad chat. So tonight we are discussing the sequel to the Hazelwood by Melissa Albert and it is called the night country so if you have not read the Hazelwood you cannot read the night country. I think we all agree on that. Completely pretty NECESSAR- I mean. Yeah I mean I guess if you were stranded at an airport and that was the only book you can read like she will catch you up on the events of the first book but it would be weird and I don't think he'd be invested. I actually think that I wanNA pop in before we get any further and talk a little bit more about that. I think not only. Is it important? That you've read the Hazelwood. I think it's easier if you've recently read the Hazel. Would I think that I think that it's worth re-reading it for this novel? I I completely agree. I got started on it and then I was like Ooh. We'll we'll wait a second Who Do I know this from this? Do I? And I had to definitely go back. And just revisited just because it is a whole new world nation in there. Yeah no definitely so. We've all said you can't read the night country without reading the Hazelwood. So spoiler alert. We cannot talk about the night country without talking about the Hazelwood. So get our spoiler. Free section will be filled with spoilers from the Hazelwood. You have been warned. And if you like fantasy and you haven't read the Hazel lead you need to rethink your life? Really need to read it. Go listen to our episode about it. Join in with us and then come on back to the night country. So as a as a quick recap the Hazelwood is about Alice and her mother. Hulu love who lead a nomadic life. Her mother moves her from town to town. Running away from strange happenings. That happened around Alice and it turns out that Alice was a story in a fairy tale world doomed to loop in this horrible story that she was written into over and over and her mother stole her from that storybook land and the whole story is about her being drawn back in and escaping again. Her Grandma was the one that Kind of perpetuated all of this She stole the stories from what they call a spinner. Yeah so so in a typical portal fantasy style. Her grandmother was sucked into this storybook world from our world and stole all of these stories and wrote them into books into our world so we know about this world in that world much like lion witch and the wardrobe that kind of thing so when the books starts we've got. Alice is back home Her and her friend Finch Had defeated the spinner. If you will and all the stories are free but not everybody's happy about that that's right and that is what leads us into the night country which let me give you a bit of the Synopsis. With ellery. Finch's help alice escape the hinterland and her reclusive grandmothers dark legacy now she and the rest of the dregs of the fairy tale world have washed up in New York City where Alice's trying to make a new unmatchable life but when Alice learns something is stalking the hinterland survivors. She suspects their deaths may heavy darker purpose. Meanwhile I actually don't want to read this next part because I feel spoiled. I am not going to read the next part of this synopsis. Because I feel it spoiler. That is surprised about halfway through the book but there is some cool other stuff happening as well so manda yes you recently. Reread the HAZLITT. Prior to reading the night country said right to be fair. I kind of read skim debt because I remember things I was like. Oh that's right now. I'm more expected to me. How excited were you to get back into the world of the Hazelwood I was. I was totally excited. I mean we. We all love our fairytales. Anyway but of course this one this this particular world. These are not the scrubbed up very shiny fairytales of a shirt nineties childhood. These are kind of old school. Lots of Gore. Plenty of death and violence darkened cruelty and beauty right which you don't you don't really get enough of but yet it was just so delightful and original with these stories that the author had come up with That populated this lovely his would world and so I was really excited to revisit that 'cause this book The first one the Hazelwood was like Scott and I absolutely loved it. Love Love Love that book hard and not you know. It's it's kind of scary when the next outing is is upon you. And you're like am I gonNA love this. Do I have to like compare this to the other one. Do I just linked together as an expert in the story you know because you WANNA give it. It's fair shake but at the same time. It's hard when you love the first book in the series so much absolutely. It's it's really hard for each stripe twice as they say. Yeah and has she says in the afterward second books are hard only imagine I actually. Yeah it's you know so many times in movies and in books they call it the sophomore slump and I think it's partially because people have such expectations and then it's like okay like we got up. We gotta be fair here but yet the same time. It's like you know they've got a catch lightning in a bottle twice for you. Yeah and I think oftentimes you see this happening with TV. Shows a lot too is like there's a story that they wanna tell maybe in the first season and it's that person who that small group of people have been writing that story for years and years by the time we get to it. You know like she. I don't think she just came up with the hazelwood on a whim decided to go ahead and start writing it three weeks later. The novel has done something she'd been working on. I would assume for quite some time. It was so lovingly. Thoughtfully put together So you know so. Where do you take the story after that? Exactly it's a love of a lifetime than you know what you do next so keeping it splurge free. Should we just share experience scores with the night country? I think we should and I'd like to go. I if I may to our listeners. Who HAVE MESSAGED US? You may notice that. We are a week late on our episode. And that's because before even starting this book I have been in a bit of a book. Slump is mainly my fault. So I'm just GONNA put it out there so I came into this with a little bit of a struggle but once I really started this book. This was a pure page Turner for me. I really enjoyed going back into Melissa. Albert's world I was really excited to see what was next for these characters in this world and where it was going to go and once I really started it I I loved being that experience. I think that's a really really wall said how about you. Amanda what's your spoiler free experience I mean I I loved it I would almost say I liked it even better than the first one It's possibly because the first one was so good. It left so much content in my head it didn't have to rebuild itself but Guy Loved it. You know this one takes place mainly in our world which was a just a whole different kind of dynamic for me from the first one and I really really enjoyed that. Ooh I like that. You had that experience and that it was almost like better than the first book for you. That's like that. That is shocking. I mean not like anything content wise. But just like. Wow Yeah okay I always like I books better too so adding on it in going in slightly different directions with it. I really appreciated. That was very much along for the ride. I agree on that. I think it was really smart. How she told the story and I really listened to our Jonah Junkies episode that Scott and I did about this book Recently to and Scott had been really nervous about a sequel or more books in the series. Because he's like oh it's just so you know so good and you know you don't WanNa ruin it and I think that she approached it in such a smart way that it was almost like impossible for the first book to be ruined like she did just enough of like different stuff. You know what I mean. Yeah I completely agree so for me I would say this was a solid page. Turner not quite the full-on Obsession. I had with the first book but that might have just been like head space or maybe being nervous about where this book was going. You know just because it is a follow up to book. I love so much but definitely a solid solid page Turner. I have to say that that the first book a and I and I realized some of this stuff as I've talked to friends who have read it. Since we recorded our episode it starts as a kind of traditional you know y a fantasy novel and goes into a very dark unique kind of twisted confusing place and it's very unique in the way that it goes that route this this book. She does a good job of taking from that dark place and making it kind of a more like realizing okay. This is kind of a dark and kind of a grungy world going on from that but but creating a story. That is very different. The tone overall starts from where the Hazelwood let leaves off but it the whole book feels like a very different story and I think that that as you said works very well for it to not try and really be the exactly the same. Yeah I one hundred percent agree with that and I think she gave the characters a lot of room to breathe and That that was something that was really to the to praise this book. And like how much How it was even better than I could have anticipated that you know. The characters are main characters finch and Alice. They're not together for most of the book..