Happy Monday, guys!
This week, we're reviewing Journey's End for the blog tour! We adore Rachel Hawkins, and are thrilled (and most definitely creeped out) by her foray into the middle grade world.
Check out our review below + a chance to win the ARC! MMGM is a feature hosted by the fabulous Shannon Messenger on her blog every week!
Expected publication: October 25th 2016 by G.P. Putnam's Sons Books for Young Readers
Amazon | Indiebound | Book Depository | Goodreads
Rachel Hawkins brings her unique brand of humor and urban fantasy to the middle grade genre, vis-a-vis a remote Scottish village called Journey’s End which has been encircled by a heavy fog nicknamed the Boundary for hundreds of years.
While the village has learned to live with the fog, American Nolie Stanhope is visiting her father and determined to investigate the mysterious phenomenon. She is joined by native Journey’s End resident Bel McKissick, and the two girls become embroiled in a mystery that extends centuries into the past.
What’s great about Journey’s End is that Hawkins effortlessly tells a horror/fantasy mystery, intermixed with her usual trademark themes about growing up and coming into one’s place into the world.
While readers see Nolie and Bel struggling with the ramifications of Al’s return and what it means for the village, we also see how this mystery positively helps influence the course of their day-to-day-lives as well, including repairing friendships, helping family relationships and even developing more positive associations with the village.
Readers will especially enjoy the development of the friendship between Nolie and Bel. We see that they clearly need one another, and Hawkins thoughtfully points out that it’s that friendship which helps bring out the respective qualities that both young girls need, to help solve this ongoing mystery - which is especially apparent as the stakes of the Boundary grow higher and higher.
While it's hard to make something non-sentinent seem creepy, the mystery behind the fog is eerie and oddly thought-provoking. Hawkins does a credible job of connecting the growth of the fog to some truths of the village, and also does a nice job of incorporating both hints of the supernatural and some social commentary, all into one creepy, eerie ball. It's actually very reminiscent of Stephen King's The Mist, and older readers will appreciate that touch.
Bottom line: While Journey’s End appears to be a standalone novel, Hawkins has already built the foundations for a mysterious, magical world that deserves to be explored further.
Highly recommend this book for intrepid young readers who are looking for adventure and mystery. Also highly recommend for reluctant readers- Hawkins will absolutely draw them in.
Check out the rest of the tour:
10/25: Buttermybooks (Spotlight)
10/26: Once Upon a Twilight (Guest Post)
10/27: Novel Novice (Mood Board)
10/28: In Wonderland (Reasons to Read)
10/31: Middle Grade Mafioso (Q&A)
11/1: Green Bean Teen Queen (Reasons to Read)
11/2: YA Bibliophile (Review)
11/3: Stories & Sweeties (Review)
11/4: The Book Wars (Guest Post)
So enter below to win my ARC - just comment and tell me what you want to read this book. US ONLY.