In this third installment of the Aveline Jones series, our protagonist, Aveline, and her friend Harold travel to Scarbury to find clues about the disappearance of Avenline’s uncle. When they go through his house and his things, though, they find the mystery to his disappearance more supernatural than expected.
As with the other two of this series, I absolutely adored this book. I don’t know that there are any negative opinions I have about this book, so I will focus on the many positives!
First, the way that Hickes writes makes you feel like you are seeing things through the whimsical perspective of a child, which is the perspective I always wish to have, especially when reading about whimsical subject matters. It’s always reminded me a bit of Coraline, or even Alice in Wonderland, where the child hero(es) must make sense of the fantasy world, learn its rules and its dangers, in order to escape.
Next are the elements of folklore. In the first two books, we see the folklore behind ghosts and witches (two of my favorite folkloric subjects). However, this latest book has covered my absolute favorite piece of folklore:
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Faeries! Hickes does a fantastic job at describing the more traditional folklore of faeries, even making them as creepy and dangerous as they ought to be. He describes how they are associated with the dead, which is something a lot of books either touch on only briefly or don’t mention at all. And, to me, that is what makes faerie so fascinating and terrific (the scary version of the word), the fact that everything about the faeries is either dead or artificial. One of the best faerie books I have read in a while!
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And lastly, of course, is Aveline herself. She is so headstrong and determined to find her uncle, and to solve every mystery that comes her way. But, most importantly I think, is that she is a fierce friend. I’ve probably said that multiple times in my other Aveline reviews, but it’s true! And you need good friends with you if you are to battle the elements of the supernatural.
What a fabulous book to start the new year with, and perfect for the winter and cold season! I look forward to the next book eagerly!
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