Book Reviews by Today, I Read…

A Continuous Book Review and Vocabulary Assignment

September 3

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Recent Arrivals: The Hollow by Jessica Verday and Ash by Malinda Lo

by Ann-Katrina

Recent Arrivals chronicles the books that have made their way onto the Today, I Read… bookshelf. Here are the latest arrivals: The Hollow by Jessica Verday and Ash by Malinda Lo

The Hollow

The Hollow Cover 544 pages; Simon Pulse; Pub. Sept. 1, 2009

First line: It was funny. At a time like this, I wasn’t supposed to be thinking […] *


When Abbey’s best friend, Kristen, vanishes at the bridge near Sleepy Hollow Cemetery, everyone else is all too quick to accept that Kristen is dead?and rumors fly that her death was no accident. Abbey goes through the motions of mourning her best friend, but privately, she refuses to believe that Kristen is really gone. Then she meets Caspian, the gorgeous and mysterious boy who shows up out of nowhere at Kristen’s funeral, and keeps reappearing in Abbey’s life. Caspian clearly has secrets of his own, but he’s the only person who makes Abbey feel normal again…but also special.

Just when Abbey starts to feel that she might survive all this, she learns a secret that makes her question everything she thought she knew about her best friend. How could Kristen have kept silent about so much? And could this secret have led to her death? As Abbey struggles to understand Kristen’s betrayal, she uncovers a frightening truth that nearly unravels her—one that will challenge her emerging love for Caspian, as well as her own sanity.


Ash Cover 272 pages; Brown Young Readers; Pub. Sept. 1, 2009

First line: Aisling’s mother died at midsummer.


Pushed into indentured servitude for her stepmother in the City to pay off her father’s debts, Ash is consumed with grief. She misses her family and her happy life at the edge of the Wood where old magic used to linger in the air like fairy breath. Her only joy comes from the brief, stolen walks in the woods with the dark and dangerous fairy Sidhean. Ash’s single, unspoken hope is that someday he might steal her away, as fairies are said to do.

But on the day that Ash meets Kaisa, the King’s Huntress, her heart begins to change. Instead of chasing fairies, from Kaisa she learns the art of the hunt, how to ride and track. Their friendship is as delicate as a new bloom, but it grows and changes, and with it, Ash reawakens her capacity for love—and her desire to live.

Entrancing and romantic, Ash is an empowering retelling of Cinderella about choosing life and love over solitude and death, where transformation can come from even the deepest grief.

I was so excited when these books arrived (both on the same day no less) because it means I have a couple more books to add to the RIP IV reading pool. The Hollow immediately went on my Want List™ when I first read about it during a Waiting on Wednesday round. Plus, Ash will be my first foray into (contemporary) GLBT reading (I think…I can’t recall any other title off the top of my head, but I may have read something in high school) and I’m anxious to see how it’s done.

* I’m trying something new with the first line; rather than printing only the first full sentence, I’m only going to include the first line as printed in the book.

Comments on Recent Arrivals: The Hollow by Jessica Verday and Ash by Malinda Lo

  1. # Karissa Eckert wrote on September 3, 2009 at 7:44 pm:

    I really liked “Ash” a lot :-) I am interested to hear how you like “The Hollow”. I have that one on my TBR list too!
    .-= ´s last blog ..Strange Brew edited by P. N. Elrod (4/5 stars) =-.

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