Thursday, September 9, 2010

Book Reivew: The Replacement by Brenna Yovanoff

I'm taking a break from my DBF posts to fit in this review.  It's my first RIP V review and I'm pretty excited about it.

Can I just tell you guys how thrilled I was the day I got this in the mail?  It was a total surprise, but an awesome one because I'd really been wanting to read it.  The gothic looking stroller with the scissors and knives above it completely creeped me out, in an awesome way.

The book is set in a small town and centers around Mackie, who is allergic to blood and metal.  His allergy is so severe that he is dying.  We know from the beginning that Mackie is a changeling - he was replaced as a baby with a creature from another world.  Mackie is slowly drawn into that world as he looks for another missing child.

It's a hard book to review.  I was into the story, I read it quickly, and by the end I couldn't put it down.  I liked the main characters and I thought the premise was awesome.  But.

There were some major plot holes I just couldn't get past.  I'll try to do this without spoilers, so if I leave out a plot hole, it's because I can't explain it without giving something away.  The main one for me was if Mackie is allergic to blood, how is he living?  Does he have something other than blood running through his veins?  Not ever explained.  Also, why and how does the other world exist?  The town Mackie lives in has a sembiotic relationship with the other world.  We know that from the beginning.  Exactly what this relationship is, however, is never explained.  It's hinted at, but that only confuses the story more.  It's really hard to explain with no spoilers.

The book also let me down in the level of creepiness.  Given the cover image, I was expecting to be freaked out.  It just didn't happen.  Part of me wonders if that has something to do with my age and the fact that I've recently read several Stephen King books.  Had I read this book as a young teen, I would have definitely been freaked out.  I guess my creepiness threshhold has increased since my teen years.  I also think many teens are still well past me in terms of being desensitized to creepiness.  After all, they've grown up watching Saw and Hostel and all kinds of other nastiness (You do not want to get me started on how the downfall of our culture will be the sexualization of violence against women - I'm looking at you horror movies and people who pay money to see women tortured).  Anyway, what I'm trying to say is that the scariest part of this book is its cover. 

Still, while I wouldn't recommend this one on the basis of its writing or literary content, I did like the story.  And I was engrossed in it and cared about the characters and wanted them to discover the truth and save the day.  This isn't a Shiver or Hunger Games though.  I recommend if you're in the mood for complete and total mind candy.  And I mean  Good for a break after some very serious and dark books, but not something you want to really focus on.

A huge thank you to Razorbill and Penguin for reading my mind and sending me this book!

Book 1/4 for RIP V Book Challenge


  1. Wow, the cover of this book is really cool... I want to read it for that alone! lol

  2. Great review really gives me a good sense of the tone of the book and whether I'd want to read it or not :)
    For me, it's probably a not, as my creepiness threshhold is pretty low!

  3. I've been looking forward to this one. Disappointing that it's not as creepy as the cover implies. I think I'll still pick up - maybe from the library instead of purchasing.