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In the Forests of the Night by Kersten…
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In the Forests of the Night

by Kersten Hamilton

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I fell in love with Tyger, Tyger (review here) back when I first started this blog. Kersten Hamilton approached me to review her book and I was swept away into a world that I really really didn't want to come back from.

Time went by, and I patiently waited to hear news about the second book so I could have more Teagan, Finn and Aiden in my life. Imagine my excitement when I opened a mysterious package, only to find that In the Forests of the Night was sent to me to review! I won't lie, I did a happy dance. Then I sat down, opened the book, and was swept away once again. Even after all that waiting, it was worth it.

All the characters are back in this second book. Aiden's big heart shines through even more than it did before. Abby's opinionated self is back, along with her mafia-esque siblings. Finn, the self named sexy beast, is back and even sexier than ever! Finally, and of course my favorite, Teagan is the star of this book and in all honesty it made me love her even more. See, Teagan has a tough decision to make. Honor her blood and become the killing machine that she is bred to be. Or fight instinct and do what she thinks is right? That is...if there is a "right". Teagan came alive to me in a big way during my read of this book.

In fact, all the characters really come to life so much more in this installment. There is a lot more time spent in the "real world" than in Tyger, Tyger. This allows the reader to get to know every character on a much deeper level. What I loved most is that Kersten Hamilton places all of them under one roof in this book. Yup, every single one! Their interactions range between completely random, to utterly sarcastic, down to beautifully sweet. Getting to see them as a family really struck me right in the heart. I loved it! After this, I'm not sure I have the willpower to wait for the next book. I am totally committed to these characters.

Lest you think that the book is all sarcastic comments and sunshine interactions, let me set you straight. There is action packed into In the Forests of the Night as well. Besides Teagan's inner battle, there is a goblin war brewing, and each character is trying to find their place. Darkness is coming, it's just not quite there yet. Under the surface is the tension filled relationship (or non-relationship) between Teagan and Finn. Then ever further under the surface is so much more. This is a deep book, and I adored it for that. The more you read, the more you see. It's fantastic.

Reading this story, as odd as it may sound, put a big smile on my face. Yes, I was frustrated as all get out when I got to the end and realized that there is a cliffhanger. Then again, what more could I expect? All I know is that I want more Teagan, more Finn, more goblins, and lots more from Kersten Hamilton. Her books fill the void of fantasy with a purpose. I'm hooked and I think, if you give these books a chance, you will be too.
( )
  roses7184 | Feb 5, 2019 |
I may have liked this second book in the Goblin Wars series better than the first.
Really looking forward to reading the third book!! ( )
  ElleyOtter | Nov 28, 2017 |
Mr. Wylltson, the booknerd, gentle dad-brairian, wins the Best Dad of YA Paranormal Fiction Award for counseling his love-struck teenage daughter Tea this way:

"Tea, I know you think you love Finn, and he thinks he loves you. But love is something that grows. You've really only known each other for a few weeks. He's a fine young man, and very serious about this. But walk together a little longer before you decide about marriage....

"If we never loved, then maybe we would never feel pain. Love anyway. It's worth it. But let it grow slowly. Intentionally. And keep in mind that all you have to do is say the word, and I will throw that young man out the door."

HAH!

I remember liking the first book, with reservations, but after a slightly melodramatic start/recap of Book One, this one really took off. It was funnier and more heartfelt than the first one, and there were no strange time jumps that distracted from connecting with main character Teagan, who is one of the stronger heroines I've encountered. I'm so glad I have an ARC of Book Three ready to go. ( )
  Crowinator | Sep 23, 2013 |
I absolutely love this series! The blend of Celtic mythology with a contemporary time and place has created a world that borders on reality. The author takes the fantasy beasts and creatures of Mag Mell and brings them out of their realm and into Chicago in such a way that it feels like it could be a true possibility. From time to time throughout this book and the last, she mentions those little shadows and glimpses that we all get from time to time and attributes them to those things like the cat sidhe... those things that we can't see but just may be there, lurking just out of our sight.

There is a fairly large cast of characters, all of whom contribute to the story. There is Teagan and Finn, her BFF Abby and her little brother Aiden, Thomas and Aint Roisin, Mameio and her father, The cat sidhe Grendel and the sprite Lucy. This is a hefty cast, especially when you add in all of the other supporting characters, but they all have their place in the story... and in the Wylltson household!

Teagan goes through a lot of personal growth in this book as her previously dormant goblin blood comes to the surface. Goblin she may be, but her heart is human and that is what she strives for. Part of what makes her so endearing is her compassion and need to care for others. We really see that in this book, in her attempts to care for her brother, for Abby, her father, and through her job at the zoo.

Finn is also a star in this book! He is the epitome of a great Book Boyfriend. He's smart and capable, funny and supportive. He loves Teagan, accepts her for who and what she is... which is a big thing in this case as she is a goblin and he is sworn to protect against her kind. He loves her brother and is noble to the point of frustration in how he handles his feelings for Teagan, out of respect for her father.

Things to love about In the Forests of the Night...

--The folklore. I love, LOVE, LOVE the folklore that is such a big part of the story. I love how it is woven into the contemporary world of Chicago that they live in.
--Cindy. The scenes with Cindy in the zoo, with her interactions with her "boyfriend" and the doctor... hilarious!

My recommendation: A fantastically wonderful read that makes you wonder about those things just beyond your sight! ( )
  Kiki870 | Aug 28, 2013 |
Review Courtesy of Dark Faerie Tales

Quick and Dirty: Teagan tries to overcome her goblin nature while coping with school, other kidnapping goblins, and a Irish boy whose duty is to fight goblins.

Opening Sentence: Teagan Wylltson blinked and tried to focus on her five-year-old brother, Aiden.

The Review:

The book picks up right where the first book left off with Finn and Teagan talking on the roof. The gang has gone and come back from Mag Mell (goblin realm) and now they have to deal with the after math. With Fear Doirich still hot on their tails and Teagan’s goblin nature growing stronger, the book is full of action and many details to absorb.

I think the main problem with this book is that it’s so big. The book itself is less than 300 pages, but there are so many details to retain throughout the whole series. There are so many characters, events, details, and coincidences that it’s hard to keep track of it all. Details from the first book become factors In the Forests of the Night, and it took several chapters to reacquaint myself with the characters.

Although it took a while to become attached to the book, the plot was well-rounded. Enough action with down-time scattered in between. The romance between Finn and Teagan is part of the main story line, and although they had some obstacles to overcome, I thought that once they realized they loved each other, there was nowhere to go with the plot. Granted, Teagan did break up with him (see notable scene below), but it didn’t last long. I love teenage angst (books only please) but this book only had a few pages of it before it was resolved. Also, some of the solutions to the conflicts were a bit “coincidental.” Abby just happening to know people or the Green Man just happening to have a soft spot for romance may work once, but one after the other can ruin the depth. If a conflict takes a whole chapter to tell and the solution only takes a sentence, the story loses any hope of being realistic.

Now with the negative stuff out of the way, the book was a nice break from the huge books with emotional roller costars. Sometimes you just need a simple book with happy endings. This book is the perfect cure for a mentally exhausted reader. If Tyger, Tyger was the flame, then Forests was the marshmallows roasting above it. The conflict has been explained, the world has been described, and the characters have been introduced. Forests builds on everything that has happened in Tyger, Tyger – more detail, more insight, more complexity. You get a closer look into the characters and find more layers to uncover, especially in Teagan.

Overall, once you get past the beginning, this is an alright book. If you can ignore some of the easy way outs, you should enjoy the whole series. My one suggestion: read Tyger, Tyger before you start this one to refresh your memory.

Notable Scene:

“Finn Mac Cumhaill,” Teagan said, “I do love you.”

“I’m taking this to mean we’re not broken up, then. It was the fever speaking.”

“No. It wasn’t the fever. You want forever, and… I can’t promise I won’t change even more. But I’m going to take care of Fear Doirich before I do.” She turned and started walking toward the old willow.

“Saying ‘I love you’ is no way to break up with a man!” Finn yelled behind her.

FTC Advisory: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt/Clarion Books provided me with a copy of Forests of the Night. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review. ( )
  DarkFaerieTales | Jun 26, 2012 |
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Teagan, Finn, and Aiden have made it out of Mag Mell alive, but the Dark Man's forces follow them to Chicago, where Tea's goblin cousins cause all sorts of trouble while she is torn between the life she wants and the future she is drawn to as a wild Stormrider, born to reign.… (more)

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