ARC Book Review: The Drowned Forest

The Drowned Forest CoverBook: The Drowned Forest by Kristopher Reisz

Expected Publication is February 8 by Flux|Expected Number Of Pages: 263

Where I Got It: from, which hasn’t influenced my review in any way.  Promise!

Series: None

Genre: YA Horror/Paranormal/Contemporary

You can find The Drowned Forest on goodreads and you can find Kristopher Reisz on twitter and his website

Goodreads Summary:

Holly and Jane have jumped off the bridge over their Alabama reservoir hundreds of times. But one day, Holly’s jump goes wrong. Her body never comes up, but something else does—a sad creature of mud, full of confusion and sorrow. Jane knows it’s Holly, somehow, trapped and mixed up with the river. But Holly doesn’t know she’s dead, and that anything she touches will die, too . . . even those she loves the most.

Meanwhile, Jane’s family doesn’t believe what she knows about Holly. They are threatening to place Jane in a mental institution, and her pastor thinks she is crossing over into the Devil’s playground. In spite of her community’s doubts, Jane can tell it’s Holly, and she has to put her to rest.

What I Thought:

I’m not sure where to start with The Drowned Forest!  Parts of it were really interesting, but I also found parts of it confusing.

So Jane’s friend Holly dies, but it’s a while before you even figure it out.  You know something happened to Holly, but it honestly took me awhile to figure out what happened to her.  The book definitely felt a little confusing at first, because Jane kept thinking about Holly and what happened to her, but I had no clue who Holly was or what happened to her.  Granted, I didn’t read the summary before reading the book, and that could have helped a lot in terms of what was going on.

Still, something about the beginning seemed confusing, and it was really hard to get into at first.  I love the idea that Holly doesn’t realize she’s dead, and kills everything she touches.  There’s this folklore or whatever surrounding this forest in a lake, and that was really intriguing, especially because of Jane’s beliefs and how she deals with the death of her friend.

I felt like The Drowned Forest could have been a lot more creepy and haunting, and it definitely had the potential for creepy and haunting and gothic.  That aspect of the book just wasn’t there for me.

Jane is an interesting character, and I liked that she stuck to her beliefs while also meeting some people who challenged them.  She was very determined to figure out what happened to Holly, which I appreciated.  But something about it didn’t click with me.  So, Jane runs away from home, and I find it weird that there’s little mention of her parents after she leaves home.  As for the other characters, they didn’t make much of an impression.

Let’s Rate It:

The Drowned Forest was an okay read.  There was something confusing and jumbled about The Drowned Forest (well, to me) and I definitely thought it could have been a lot creepier.  But I did like the folklore surrounding the lake and the things and people in it. The Drowned Forest gets 2 stars.

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