Review: Hemlock

Title: Hemlock (Hemlock #1)Hemlock (Hemlock, #1)

Author: Kathleen Peacock

Publication Date: May 8, 2012

Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books

Summary: Fans of Maggie Stiefvater and the hit television show True Blood will flock to this first book in the supernatural mystery series set in a town where werewolves live in plain sight.

Mackenzie Dobson’s life has been turned upside down since she vowed to hunt her best friend Amy’s killer: a white werewolf. Lupine syndrome—also known as the werewolf virus—is on the rise across the country, and bloodlust is not easy to control. But it soon becomes clear that dangerous secrets are lurking in the shadows of Hemlock, Mac’s hometown—and she is thrown into a maelstrom of violence and betrayal that puts her in grave danger.

Kathleen Peacock’s thrilling debut novel provides readers with a mystery that Kimberly Derting, author of The Body Finder, calls “clever and frightening,” while Sophie Jordan, New York Times bestselling author of Firelight, raves: “Forget every werewolf book you’ve ever read. This one breaks the mold.”


I try to really avoid bashing on books because I respect the fact that someone put a lot of time and effort into making it… So I apologize for the next few paragraphs.

The main thing that really just rubbed me the wrong way in this book, was of course, the heroine. I swear, it’s like the author slammed down her manual of “How to Make Your Heroine as Blah as Possible!” and copied it word for word, because she couldn’t even put enough effort into paraphrasing it. I’m sorry, but this girl is just bad. So her name is Mac and she is just everything you expect. She puts absolutely no effort into her clothing or making her hair look nice, because that would mean that she would be aware of her hotness that makes every boy in her love secretly fall in love with her. She, of course, can’t resist doing what’s right and being a helpful goodie two-shoes in the point that is just sickening. I literally felt nauseous at some points in this book. She is always getting into trouble and getting rescued by one of her two knights, but it’s okay that she nearly got them killed trying to save her, because she was just trying to help and do what was right. Excuse me while I go puke. I just really can’t think of a single redeeming quality that she has.

Now here’s the thing… I obviously enjoy young adult books, seeing as I read them and have a blog dedicated to them… But I had to draw the line here. I can forgive authors for unoriginal storylines or ideas or whatever, as long as they try to make it new or their own and have some good world building or character development. This book had none. In this book, Mac’s super amazing best friend is killed by a werewolf (who are now “out”, by the way) and decides to track down the killer werewolf, while two boys pant over her and evil ex-girlfriends try to kill her. Her town has been taken over by these Trackers who literally just assault anyone they think is a werewolf and burn down houses with people inside and various other nefarious activities, and everyone just turns a blind eye because they want a werewolf that’s killed like three people found.

And everything in this story is just so predictable and it’s one of those books where everything is just too convenient. Like, one of the hot guys has to leave the town but Mac conveniently finds a way that he has to stay. Or she is making out with one of the boys and the other one conveniently walks in on them at just the right time. Or she finds a clue that conveniently just falls in her lap. Oh look at this, the books over and the town is saved? No need for a sequel, right? But wait, the love interest has conveniently left town because he is too dangerous and self sacrificing, so they main characters have to go on a new quest to find him. Looks like we have book number two. Convenient, right?

The mystery was a joke. I don’t even think she did any sleuthing or deducing or anything. All of the pieces were just handed to her at the right time in the story. And oh, she of course didn’t tell anyone when she found out who the bad guy was because she had to make really REALLY sure by sneaking into his house alone and getting kidnapped. But it’s okay, because one of the good guys conveniently saw her get taken and ran to get the gang all together for a rescue mission.

I feel almost bad because I can’t really think of a single thing I really liked about this book. I guess I was almost amused by how bad and predictable it was, like watching some really bad movie late at night because you’re ashamed and don’t want anyone to know you’re watching it. It’s bad, but almost so bad that it’s fun. But less fun, in this case.



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