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THE LUMINARIES by Susan Dennard

Hemlock Falls isn’t like other towns. You won’t find it on a map, your phone won’t work here, and the forest outside town might just kill you.

Winnie Wednesday wants nothing more than to join the Luminaries, the ancient order that protects Winnie’s town—and the rest of humanity—from the monsters and nightmares that rise in the forest of Hemlock Falls every night.

Ever since her father was exposed as a witch and a traitor, Winnie and her family have been shunned. But on her sixteenth birthday, she can take the deadly Luminary hunter trials and prove herself true and loyal—and restore her family’s good name. Or die trying.

But in order to survive, Winnie enlists the help of the one person who can help her train: Jay Friday, resident bad boy and Winnie’s ex-best friend. While Jay might be the most promising new hunter in Hemlock Falls, he also seems to know more about the nightmares of the forest than he should. Together, he and Winnie will discover a danger lurking in the forest no one in Hemlock Falls is prepared for.

Not all monsters can be slain, and not all nightmares are confined to the dark.

Title : The Luminaries
Author : Susan Dennard
Series : The Luminaries #1
Format : eARC
Page Count : 305
Genre : Fantasy/Horror
Publisher : Daphne Press
Release Date : November 1, 2022

Reviewer : Micky
Rating : ★ ★ ★ ★

Micky’s 4 star review

Creepy forests and creatures
Reading ease

I found The Luminaries incredibly easy to get into and stay connected through. This was an world that was understandable and a main character that was engaging and that I felt on side with. Alongside all this was some delicious creepy forest with some less delicious chilling creatures.

Winnie and her family as outcasts seemed to have been given a hard and unfair ride thanks to the actions of her father. Her mum was an interesting character and somewhat weak considering she was supposed to be a renowned hunter; that didn’t quite add up even at the end of this first book. Her brother I liked and Jay also had me intrigued.

Winnie’s friends however…nope; I’m here not to forgive and forget. I loved the trials (not over extended build up or delivery) and any hunting practice or action. The nightmares lived up to their names on the whole.

I can’t finish this review without making reference to the fact that I felt a Vampire Academy vibe all the way through this book. I mean that as a complement rather than a criticism.

Thank you to Tor UK/Panmacmillan for the eARC.


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