Monday, August 16, 2010

The Hollow by Jessica Verday

The Hollow had me caught in its web from the very first page. I was immediately swept into Abby's feelings of disbelief, grief, and finally tentative acceptance over the death of her best friend Kristen. Mixed into this brew is Caspian, a gorgeous and mysterious boy full of "mixed signals", parents that can seem insensitive but are ultimately loving and understanding, some cheerleaders that may just push Abby over the edge, and a tangle of dark secrets that would test the sanity of just about any girl.

Abigail "Abby" Browning is the life and soul of this book. Her emotions are so true to life and her behaviors so very human that I was immediately drawn to her. She became even more real as I learned about her hobby (perfume making) and her goal to open her own store called Abby's Hollow. I found myself rooting for her as she dealt with all the trouble brewing in her life.

The story begins with the disappearance of Abby's best friend, Kristen. The townspeople believe that Kristen is dead, drowned after an "accident" on Sleepy Hollow's famous bridge. However, Abby refuses to believe that her best friend is dead. It isn't until Caspian comes along that she really begins to admit the truth to herself. She is incredibly drawn to Caspian, but her guilt for being happy when Kristen may be dead, and Caspian's mixed signals make the relationship difficult. Then, Abby discovers that Kristen kept some big secrets from her, secrets that may or may not be involved with the accident on the bridge that night...

Set against the backdrop of Sleepy Hollow, New York, this story is brilliantly interwoven with myth and legend. I absolutely loved that each chapter began with a quote from 'The Legend of Sleepy Hollow'. Also, Abby and the other townsfolk's deep connection with 'The Legend' really added to the story. The reader even gets to spend some time with the Headless Horseman and Katrina Van Tassel.

The ending of The Hollow left me with a hundred questions and a longing for the next book. Book two, The Haunted, will come out in hardcover on August thirty-first.

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