Thursday, August 7, 2014

Review: Winterkill (Kate A. Boorman)

WinterkillHardcover, 319 pages
Expected publication: September 9th 2014 by Amulet Books

ARC Provided by Publisher in Exchange for Honest Review

Emmeline knows she’s not supposed to explore the woods outside her settlement. The enemy that wiped out half her people lurks there, attacking at night and keeping them isolated in an unfamiliar land with merciless winters. Living with the shame of her grandmother’s insubordination, Emmeline has learned to keep her head down and her quick tongue silent.
When the settlement leader asks for her hand in marriage, it’s an opportunity for Emmeline to wash the family slate clean—even if she has eyes for another. But before she’s forced into an impossible decision, her dreams urge her into the woods, where she uncovers a path she can’t help but follow. The trail leads to a secret that someone in the village will kill to protect. Her grandmother followed the same path and paid the price. If Emmeline isn’t careful, she will be next. 

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Kate A. Boorman
Kate Boorman is an independent artist and writer from the Canadian prairies. She has a Master of Arts in Dramatic Critical Theory, and a work resume full of the usual, whacky assortment of jobs.
Kate spent much of her childhood reading books instead of being useful around the house, and now she writes them, which means she is still not very useful. She is fond of beautiful-creepy things, good chocolate, and cozy slippers (all three are an essential part of her writing process).
She also loves to dig in the dirt, and sit under starry skies with her friends, and travel to far off lands with her husband and two children.
The Winterkill trilogy is her YA fiction debut.

"They are isolated....but not alone..."

So I will have to admit that the first thing that grabbed my attention towards this book.....was the cover. I mean what a seriously wicked, creepy cover. Winterkill is written in stakes in replace of fence posts, there is snow covering an entire village, and a young girl with a red robe running through it. Yep...I had to have this one.

Winterkill is about the journey of a young girl named Emmeline that is  determined to discover the truth about her village. Of course this synopsis immediately reminded me of "The Village by M. Night Shyamalan" but let me assure you that it is very different. Emmeline's settlement has been slowly deteriorating and her people are disappearing. The villagers blame these occurrences on the "malmaci" which are the creatures that haunt the woods surrounding the village. 

"Out here, I can feel the dead in the trees. The Lost People rustle the leaves, muddy the shafts of light through the branches, whisper in my ear. They creep dusty fingers along my neck,tug at my braid, pull strands from my plait to tickle my face. Or mayhap its the wind....."

Emmeline's grandmother was shamed from their village and cast out and when this happens the descendants of her family are all branded as "stained." Em never really understands why her grandmother was cast out and she is determined to discover the truth. She has dreams that call her into the woods and forces her to break the rules of her village but Em's journey to discover the truth may end up causing her death. 

Each chapter of this book was so fascinating and I was completely absorbed in the story. Every time I thought I had the mystery uncovered....I was so wrong. There are so many twists  in this book and I loved every one of them!!! 

The only thing that I will say confused me a little with this book was the language. There were certain parts where characters spoke a different language and it was not exactly explained what they were saying so to me that was a little confusing. I tried to make sense of the sentences by the writing around it but sometimes I just couldn't figure it out and it threw me off the story at times. 

Another aspect of the story that I really enjoyed was the romance. The romance between Kane and Em was so young and sweet. The setting of the story reminds me of the ways of the Amish in that their traditions are very similar. Em and Kane are so innocent and yet so in love. It was a perfect addition to this story. 

Winterkill is full of suspense, atmosphere, secrets, romance, and a spell-binding mystery. Fans of Young Adult will devour this book.  Kate Boorman is definitely going on my favorite authors list. She is an amazing story-teller and weaves a story that keeps you guessing until the last page is turned. 

**The quotes from this book have been taken from an Advanced Reading Copy and are subject to change when the final book is printed. Please refer to the final, finished copy for exact quotes!**

**I want to give a HUGE THANK YOU to ABRAMS for the opportunity to review this phenomenal, incredible, AMAZING book!!**

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