My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Debut YA author James Dawson has written a sort of surprising novel here. Initially I read Hollow Pike with a horrendously blase attitude. Witches. Yawn.
But then, it so got me. Dawson’s produced a sexy (that front cover is very indicative of the style within) and dark novel which had me laughing out loud with glee at the simple audacity of the Big Twist. I won’t even attempt to spoil it but the eventual location for the Big Bad? Genius.
It’s written from the perspective of teenager Lis London who’s just moved to Hollow Pike following bullying at her old school, and Lis swiftly makes friends at her new school. I actually really enjoyed how ‘non-sterotypical’ these teens were and how they actually existed as characters instead of just foils for Lis. (God knows if non-stereotypical is a word but I’m sticking with it).
There are elements of everything here: Scooby-Doo mysteries, The Craft, Scream, and a heavy dose of Mean Girls. And then it takes it all and flings it up North in a desperately weird little town full of Wait, Did I Just See That Or Did I Imagine It moments. Ace.
The attitude that I started this book with? Wrong.
The attitude I finished this book with? Curled under the quilt at midnight, “just reading a few pages more”?
So very right.