Goodreads Synopsis: Children can have a cruel, absolute sense of justice. Children can kill a monster and feel quite proud of themselves. A girl can look at her brother and believe they’re destined to be a knight and a bard who battle evil. She can believe she’s found the thing she’s been made for.
Hazel lives with her brother, Ben, in the strange town of Fairfold where humans and fae exist side by side. The faeries’ seemingly harmless magic attracts tourists, but Hazel knows how dangerous they can be, and she knows how to stop them. Or she did, once.
At the center of it all, there is a glass coffin in the woods. It rests right on the ground and in it sleeps a boy with horns on his head and ears as pointed as knives. Hazel and Ben were both in love with him as children. The boy has slept there for generations, never waking.
Until one day, he does…
As the world turns upside down, Hazel tries to remember her years pretending to be a knight. But swept up in new love, shifting loyalties, and the fresh sting of betrayal, will it be enough?
Holly Black’s book is one that I picked up at random, because I have a library card and can. But this ended up being a really great find!
The Darkest Part of the Forest is a fairy tale in the real world (of sorts) and it’s so wonderfully done. The way Black is able to create this world within our world is simply magical. I love good world-building if you couldn’t tell. 😉
I also enjoyed the characters Hazel, Ben and the boy with horns on his head. Hazel and Ben’s relationship is really well written. It was so easy to feel for them both! I loved that Ben’s sexuality was both no big deal to the family and so positively written about. The love story for him was beautifully done. Hazel’s romance was also well done. I was afraid of there being a horrible love triangle between Hazel and her brother and the Prince. Thankfully that didn’t happen.
The plot surprised me a couple of times, which doesn’t happen often in YA. Hazel’s past, and her bargain with the fairies took a turn I didn’t see coming.
The Darkest Part of the Forest made me a big fan of Holly Black’s novels. I gave it four stars on Goodreads.