The Hazel Wood
Flatiron Books 2018
Melissa Albert‘s novel The Hazel Wood (Flatiron Books, 2018) is a shivery delight, like a dazzling vintage ball gown of paisley silk, slithering over your head. Reading it is like drowning in musk rose petals and damson wine.
It begins in an almost conventional manner, with a missing person mystery. Alice and her mother, Ella, live a peripatetic existence, which takes them from Nacogdoches, Texas to Brooklyn, New York. Alice copes with the frequent moves by becoming a loner, though she feels a fierce loyalty to her mother, and curiosity about her grandmother, a mysterious reclusive writer of fairy tales. When Ella meets and marries Harold, Alice and she stay still long enough for her past to catch up with them. One day Ella disappears, abducted in front of Harold. This is no ordinary kidnapping though, as Alice and her friend Finch soon find out. Their search for Ella takes them deeper and deeper into another reality, and the secrets of Alice’s origin, and things start to get really weird.
Gabrielle Mathieu is the author of the historical fantasy Falcon series and the upcoming epic fantasy, Girl of Fire. She blogs about travel and her books at http://gabriellemathieu.com/. You can also follow her on Twitter to get updates about new podcasts and more @GabrielleAuthor.