Book: THE REPLACEMENT
Author: BRENNA YOVANOFF
Genre: YA FANTASY
Star Book Tours
Mackie Doyle is not like most of the other teens in Gentry. He's a replacement, left in the crib to take the place of a human child. Everyone knows that these things happen. No one tries to stop it. The people under the hill are grotesque creatures in a parody of human form, and the town of Gentry can only sit by and watch as their children are taken.
Until Tate's sister becomes one of those children. Mackie feels a connection to Tate, and he feels moved to help her. Standing up against his own people may seem like the worst thing he could do, but he's the only one willing to put a stop to the monsters... despite maybe being one himself.
I had to take a breath when I finished THE REPLACEMENT. It was spooky and eerie, and though I wouldn't classify it as horror, there were elements in the novel that left me with a shiver of fear and revulsion. The people under the hill were shrouded in mystery until Mackie rips the lid off of their society. It wasn't just the act of stealing the human children that they committed. It was that they felt it was their due, and were unrepentant.
Though his involvement in the story was negligible (up until the end), I really liked the character, Roswell. As Mackie's best friend, it was clear that he knew Mackie was different. But, he was a true friend. When Mackie needed him, he was there. As was Emma, Mackie's sister. One of the greatest moments in the book for me, was when the realization dawned on Mackie why he hadn't perished in the human world yet, as so many of the replacement children do.
While the story line meandered a bit, I was really captured by Brenna Yovanoff's language. At first, I wanted to be horrified by the kind of town that would let their children be taken to an unknown fate- one that probably involved a painful death- but then I realized that their willful blindness and acceptance of what was happening made the monsters stronger. And by the monsters being strong, they robbed the Gentry residents of their will. It was totally circular, and perhaps the perfect example of how bad things happen.
3/5 for plot
3.5/5 for characters
4/5 for language
My Rating: 10.5/15 Recommend
Bonus Cover Points: 4/5 (ARC copy)