Review: The Darkest Part of the Forest by Holly Black

Image from Goodreads

Title: The Darkest Part of the Forest
Author: Holly Black
Publisher: Indigo
Publication Date: Feb 2015
Rating: 5/5

Synopsis from Goodreads

Children can have a cruel, absolute sense of justice. Children can kill a monster and feel quite proud of themselves. A girl can look at her brother and believe they’re destined to be a knight and a bard who battle evil. She can believe she’s found the thing she’s been made for.

Hazel lives with her brother, Ben, in the strange town of Fairfold where humans and fae exist side by side. The faeries’ seemingly harmless magic attracts tourists, but Hazel knows how dangerous they can be, and she knows how to stop them. Or she did, once.

At the center of it all, there is a glass coffin in the woods. It rests right on the ground and in it sleeps a boy with horns on his head and ears as pointed as knives. Hazel and Ben were both in love with him as children. The boy has slept there for generations, never waking.

Until one day, he does…

As the world turns upside down, Hazel tries to remember her years pretending to be a knight. But swept up in new love, shifting loyalties, and the fresh sting of betrayal, will it be enough?


The story is set in a small town that is inhabited by both faeries and humans. Deep into the woods there is a faerie prince who sleeps in a glass coffin. The faeries like to cause trouble in the town, but recently there have been suspicious deaths caused by the monster in the woods that no one can kill.

When the main character, Hazel, and her brother, Ben, were little they used to hunt the monsters to keep everyone safe. But, after a near-death experience, Ben insisted that they should stop. It was Hazel’s goal to slay the monster in the woods, so after their prince goes missing and Hazel wakes up with glass in her hands, her and Ben try to find him before the monster in the woods does.

My favourite part of the book is the memories that Holly Black mixes into the story, I think it gives background to the characters and explains what has happened in a way that makes you feel like you were there.

My favourite character in the book was Jack, Ben’s best friend, who is a faerie dopple-ganger of his ‘brother’ Carter. Carter was stolen by the faeries when he was a baby and Jack was left in his place, but Carters mother realised Jack was gone and, when she summoned Jack’s faerie mother, kept both babies for herself. I like Jack because he tries very hard to fit in with the town but he never seems to because he’s fey.

There is nothing that I dislike about the book, in my opinion all the characters are relatable because of the point of view that Holly writes in, you get inside all the characters heads and see the story from different angles.

I would recommend this book to young teens, and I give it ★ ★ ★ ★ ★!

I have really enjoyed reading The Darkest Part of the Forest and I’m looking forward to reading more by Holly Black because the way she writes just makes me want to curl up in a chair and read for ages, I couldn’t put this book down!


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