Written by: James Dawson.
Published by: Indigo/Orion.
Released: 2nd February 2012.
Official synopsis: "Something wicked this way comes... She thought she'd be safe in the country, but you can't escape your own nightmares, and Lis London dreams repeatedly that someone is trying to kill her. Lis thinks she's being paranoid - after all who would want to murder her? She doesn't believe in the local legends of witchcraft. She doesn't believe that anything bad will really happen to her. You never do, do you? Not until you're alone in the woods, after dark - and a twig snaps... Hollow Pike - where witchcraft never sleeps."
Early last Summer, word started to spread through Twitter and the Bloggoverse about a new book being published in February 2012 by Orion's new YA imprint, Indigo, intrigue began to build as we were given the first tantalising glimpse of Hollow Pike by one James Dawson. All we knew at the time. Witchcraft.
The cover was released a few weeks later closely followed by the official synopsis and since then the anticipation has been steadily growing with a large selection of my fellow bloggers and readers alike all getting pretty excited about this book right here. And finally last week, I got a copy! I'll admit I did a little squee dance and was so excited. Started to read it pretty much straight away and couldn't of been more surprised than I was.
Hollow Pike was NOTHING like I'd expected it to be. I had images of haggard old women around cauldrons, steaming with potions. I expected there to be spells. But there was none of that. And you know what? It doesn't need it. Hollow Pike is so much more than I expected it to be in more ways than one.
Lis has been suffering debilitating nightmares for weeks. She's scared, and puts it down to what is going on at home and hopes that the move to Hollow Pike will help them to come to an end... How wrong could she be? The dreams are vivid, dark and downright terrifying. They hold you captivated - breathless - until Lis wakes up.
Bullying and social perception plays a large roll in the book. Lis has been forced to move to Hollow Pike to escape her life back in Wales where she is looked down upon by all of her school mates. Bullied, and outcast she chooses to live with her sister in this sleepy little Yorkshire village (it is made up I should add... so don't be too scared by what happens there...). Things start of well at her new school, and her sister Sarah (her partner Max and son - Lis's nephew) love having her there and she actually seems to have been taken under the wing of the in-clique.
But then things start to go wrong as she is more and more intrigued by the outcasts of Hollow Pike. Three young teenagers. Kitty. Delilah. And Jack. Looked down upon by their peers, they show no fear and in fact, it's the people who make fun of them that show fear. For there are rumours that a long gone history of witchcraft is about to resurface.
I don't really think I can say much more without spoiling it... So all I'll say is: there are creepy old ladies, birds and lots of them, twists, turns, and a murder (which again is something I was not expecting...).
Hollow Pike has it all. Blood. Magic. Murder. Friendship. Love. Sacrifice. And a beautiful house which Lis's sister lives in (seriously, I want that house when I am older... blueprints, James?!).
It's a haunting, captivating and moving read, set at a perfect pace with beautiful writing. Watch out people because James Dawson is about to take you on one hell of a ride you will most definitely not forget. I cannot wait to see what he writes next!
My thanks have to go, again, to the ever amazing Nina at Orion for this. I have been pestering that poor woman for ages about this book, so glad it was all worth it! :D