I'm ecstatic to feature Gaby Triana's Wake the Hollow, a young adult paranormal tale of Mica's return home to Sleepy Hollow. There's an excerpt, giveaway, and of course, my review!
Confession time, here’s what I got: I’ve never read The Legend of Sleepy Hollow.
My experiences have all been with adaptations with Tim Burton’s 1999 film Sleepy Hollow the first to come to mind and pop culture references. Which I love. Hence, jumping at the chance to be a part of this tour.
Now, I’m stuck. I enjoyed it. It succeeds at building an eerie, creepy atmosphere. I loved Mica, except the romance, which was the main letdown. The plot is my absolute favorite part. But I can’t discuss it without spoilers. >:(
So now what?
Genre: Paranormal, Mystery, Romance,
Format: Ebook, 320 pgs.
Published: Aug. 2nd, 2016
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Source: Free for Review
Rating: 4 Stars
CW: Violence, Death
Forget the ghosts, Mica. It’s real, live people you should fear.
Tragedy has brought Micaela Burgos back to her hometown of Sleepy Hollow. It’s been six years since she chose to live with her father in Miami instead of her eccentric mother. And now her mother is dead.
This town will suck you in and not let go.
Sleepy Hollow may be famous for its fabled headless horseman, but the town is real. So are its prejudices and hatred, targeting Mica’s family as outsiders. But ghostly voices carry on the wind, whispering that her mother’s death was based on hate…not an accident at all. With the help of two very different guys—who pull at her heart in very different ways—Micaela must awaken the hidden secret of Sleepy Hollow…before she meets her mother’s fate.
Find the answers.
Unless, of course, the answers find you first.
Read Below for an excerpt from the book:
Since I knew nothing about Irving, it was pretty interesting to find out about him and the surrounding speculations. Enough so, I actually looked him up online after the fact.
Did you know?
Aaron Burr, a co-publisher of the Chronicle, was impressed enough to send clippings of the Oldstyle pieces [Irving’s pseudonym] to his daughter, Theodosia, while writer Charles Brockden Brown made a trip to New York to recruit Oldstyle for a literary magazine he was editing in Philadelphia.
However, if you’re looking for a retelling like Tim Burton’s, you’ll need to keep looking. It doesn’t rehash the tale and try to make it new. It rolls with it to the contemporary times. Don’t get me wrong, The Legend of the Sleepy Hollow is important but it’s famous ghosts don’t get much screen time. Its prominence and author are the lifeblood of Wake the Hollow.
The atmosphere is right, there’s violence and death, a love triangle, a dashing horse rides, and fortunes to be made or lost, but it’s fundamentally different. Tourists come for the Headless Horseman, but the main attraction in Wake the Hollow is the townspeople.
Paranormal or Magical Realism?
I shelved Wake the Hollow as paranormal and left it at that. That’s where my gut still lies, but several days ago (a week now that this review is posted) I had my mind expanded. One of the amazing I people I follow was involved in this conversation about magical realism, its Latinx authors and influence. It started with white people ignoring Latinx in the genre and generally being assholes.
Now I can’t stop thinking about that conversation when trying to review Wake the Hollow. And that’s a very good thing. First, here’s the two main threads to check out (please come back after you’re done!):
There's a weird tendency in the West: once something from outside is accepted (magical realism, yoga, etc.), it gets stripped of its roots.— Shveta શ્વેતા (@ShvetaThakrar) September 2, 2016
sorry but...a list of magical realism books that doesn't acknowledge Latinx authors or influence? pass. https://t.co/ZUZrheoHlK— Tehlor Kinney (@tehlorkay) September 2, 2016
Since I’m white and am not in the loop, I don’t feel quite comfortable labeling Wake the Hollow as magical realism, though it certainly fits the bill. Beyond the wiki definition (yeah, I know), I cannot get past how it goes THIS so fucking beautifully:
Even if it’s not exactly magical realism, I think fans of the genre will enjoy Wake the Hollow nonetheless. It’s more than another retelling of a ghost terrorizing white people or two dudes fighting for a woman’s hand or town fortunes. Of course, it has all of the above intertwined but it’s Mica, a Cuban-descended American, coming home because of her mother’s death.
Saying more might bolster my argument, but it’d ruin the story. Instead, I’d love it for you to read it and tell me what you think. Or I can spoil it privately on request if you’d like to know now.
I’m going to sound silly right now and complain of a love triangle in a Sleepy Hollow retelling but yeah, I wasn’t a fan. Not because it was there, but I don’t think it played out well.
Mica is dealing with her childhood friend turned hunky knight and the new professor, who I kept imaging as a Hispanic David Tenement repeating the theme struggling between your roots and your future.
|tall & lanky with the same geeky, mature personality|
I was on board for quite a while with this actually, having clearly picked a favorite. Then things started happening and Mica made some decisions and things were discovered and…
Like the plot, it didn’t come off smoothly. There weren’t enough clues planted beforehand to support it. Instead, it came out of the blue. “WHAT? But what sense does that make?” I think about it now and I can see it but it abruptly pulled me out of the story while reading.
I wish this had a better foundation so it didn’t feel like a slap in the face and the ending such a disappointment with underdeveloped relationships leading the way. And that’s the only damn thing that brought the book down for me. What a pity.
4 stars: For everything but the romance drama and chunky character twists. But ya’ll know my picky, iffy opinions on romances so take that as you will.
About the Author:
GABY TRIANA is the award-winning author of six YA novels—Wake the Hollow (Aug. 2016, Entangled), Summer of Yesterday, Riding the Universe, The Temptress Four, Cubanita, and Backstage Pass, as well as thirteen ghostwritten novels for best-selling authors. Originally a 4th grade teacher with a Master of Science in Elementary Education and ten years teaching experience, Gaby earned Teacher of the Year in 2000, wrote her first novel, Freddie and the Biltmore Ghost, then left teaching to launch a full-time writing career. She went on to publish young adult novels with HarperCollins and Simon & Schuster, win an IRA Teen Choice Award, ALA Best Paperback Award, and Hispanic Magazine’s Good Reads of 2008. She spends her time obsessing about Halloween, Christmas, and Disney World, as well as hosting parties, designing mugs, making whimsical cakes, and winning costume contests. When she’s not writing, she might also be watching Jurassic Park movies with her boys, posting excessive food pics on social media, or helping run the Florida region of the SCBWI. Gaby lives in Miami with her three sons, Michael, Noah, and Murphy. She has one dog, Chloe, and two cats—Miss Daisy, and the reformed thug, shooting survivor, Bowie.
Visit her at www.gabytriana.com and @GabyTriana on Twitter.
Gaby wants to fun a giveaway that includes a Grand prize of one Halloween bracelet made by her + a $20 Amazon gift card as well as 7 other Halloween bracelets to 7 runners' up. All are US only.
a Rafflecopter giveaway