Black Bird of the Gallows
Angie Dovage can tell there’s more to Reece Fernandez than just the tall, brooding athlete who has her classmates swooning, but she can’t imagine his presence signals a tragedy that will devastate her small town. When something supernatural tries to attack her, Angie is thrown into a battle between good and evil she never saw coming. Right in the center of it is Reece—and he’s not human.
What's more, she knows something most don't. That the secrets her town holds could kill them all. But that’s only half as dangerous as falling in love with a harbinger of death.
"Black Bird of the Gallows" is a truly unique and enthralling YA paranormal romance. Angie has had a tough life. She spent the first part of it living with her drug-addicted mother in a van without a stable home and came to live with her father right before her mother overdosed. It's a past she is unable to live down, as people at school won't let her forget. She carries the weight of it with her always. Aside from her kind father, she enjoys making music with her friends and DJs at THE hang-out spot in Cadence, The Strip Mall, as her alter-ego Sparo.
Her life begins to change when a new boy moves in next door, and she finds herself undeniably attracted to him. Although Reece seems to fit into a different crowd (the popular, athletic one), he seems to have taken an interest in Angie as well. As the book develops, we learn there is so much more at play with the harbingers of death and beekeepers. Although mildly scary, I think it is tempered by the YA category and appropriate for all teens- this is definitely not a horror although there is significant death as suggested by the summary.
The romance between Angie and Reece was just about perfect with the right amount of build-up plus context that makes it believable and not just insta-love. The paranormal aspects of the book are where this novel really shines, as it is incredibly creative/clever with a whole new context for the paranormal category. I don't think I have read anything like it before, and it was enthralling! I don't want to say too much about it, because I think it's better if the readers get to experience the reveals for themselves. It did honestly surprise me in the end (I had all sorts of predictions about what would happen/how it would resolve), and I love that I couldn't figure it out. Although it appears that there will be more books in this series, it absolutely reads as a stand-alone (good for people who like closure!).
Fans of Stiefvater will delight in this engaging and clever YA paranormal romance. I found it impossible to put down and enjoyed every twist and turn in this enthralling novel. Please note that I received an ARC from the publisher through netgalley. All opinions are my own.
Harbingers and Beekeepers
What a fun, exciting read! Angie had a rough life when she was growing up. Her drug addicted mom took off with her. Shortly after her dad found her again, her mom died from an overdose. She moved in with her dad in a small Pennsylvania town. While she had a couple amazing friends, Deno and Lacey, she was sort of an outcast. Angie was a band geek, but on the weekends, she transformed herself into a popular DJ. I actually loved the story of her music and how it made her feel like she was better than what the bratty high school girls thought of her.
Angie’s new neighbor, Reece, is attractive, but strange. Angie sees something odd with him and there seem to be crows everywhere since his family moved in. It doesn’t take long for Reece to come clean with her and explain that he’s a harbinger of death and that there are also beekeepers around. Her town is going to have a major tragedy and they are all there for it. Reece and Angie start to fall in love, but he’s cursed and will need to move on after the deaths. But the beekeeper thinks he can make Reece take his curse and figures a way to use Angie to do it.
The pacing of this book was great. I sat down to read for thirty minutes tonight and ended up reading for an hour and a half to finish. I just couldn’t put it down. I found the myths of the harbingers and beekeepers so interesting. Lacey and Deno were favorites. I also really love Angie’s dad and their relationship. I will admit to freaking out hoping that her dog would be safe, too. What can I say? I’m obsessed with happy endings for pets.
I can’t really get into too much more without giving away important parts of the book. I just hope everyone goes out and gives this one a chance. Black Bird of the Gallows is set to be published September 5th 2017 by Entangled Teen. I definitely plan on buying this one.
Thank you to the author, Entangled Teen, and Netgalley for the chance to read and review this book. I gave this five stars.
Hard to put down