The Hollow & The Haunted reviews were supposed to be posted on Halloween but I missed that so they're posted today, 28th November since it's the anniversary of Washington Irving's death--which I found fitting for the series.
August 3, 2010 (paperback)
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After the disappearance (and presumed death) of her best friend, Kristin, by the bridge next to Sleepy Hollow cemetery, Abbey is all alone. With no other friends, not quite ready to accept that Kristin's dead and no one else to understand what she's going through she finds tries to find comfort in creating perfumes--a pastime she loves.
Soon, she finds herself back at the bridge and the river that were the sight of Kristin's death. It's there that she meets the beautiful boy who will become her distraction--and so much more--in the months to come, Caspian.
Caspian's more than a little mysterious and Abbey only ever seems to see him when they happen to meet by the bridge or in the cemetery, but she can't help the intense feelings she quickly develops for him. Even if she does have to keep him secret from everyone in her life.
The Hollow is set in Sleepy Hollow, New York and uses quotes from "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow" to start every chapter. Abbey also visits Washington Irving's grave quite often, so the Headless Horseman's tale is a pretty bit part of The Hollow--just how big of a part, however, is saved until the end of the novel.
The 'mysterious boy that girl falls deeply and quickly in love with' plot line is not really a new idea and a times I'll admit to being really frustrated with Abbey. I wanted her to push Caspian, to ask more of him, from him, about him, etc. She seemed to have so many questions, at times, about Kristin and could be so inquisitive but then she just let such weird things go.
But other parts of the story (some of the secondary characters, the entire idea of Abbey making perfumes and her plans with it) were interesting enough to me that it kept me reading. And I'm so, so, so glad I did.
Some books are fabulous right up until the end and then the end is just so-so (I have a review of one of those coming, actually) and then some books are alright . . . until the ending. Those books have amazing endings and you either wish there was more of the book or rush off to pick up the book in the series--this was definitely one of those books and had me reaching over to pick up The Haunted without hesitation.
7/10 (but read it so that you can know what's going on in The Haunted!)