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Beneath by Gill Arbuthnott
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Beneath

by Gill Arbuthnott

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It begins with a feeling of being watched in the woods, which Jess dismisses as her imagination. Then comes the disappearance of a local boy—the second from their village in a year—which the whole neighborhood seems to dismiss as an unexplained tragedy. But when Jess sees her best friend, Freya, taken beneath the waters of Roseroot Pond by a mysterious blue-eyed black horse, she can no longer ignore the strange events surrounding her 16th century Scottish village. Jess’s attempts to explain Freya’s disappearance are met with disbelief and hostility from everyone but her grandmother. Gran tells her the local lore about the Kelpies: beings that live beneath the water and can shift between horse and human. Armed with this knowledge, Jess sets out to rescue Freya. Her journey takes her into a strange new world and a strangely powerful new relationship with Finn, the Kelpie who took Freya and who helps free her for Jess’s sake.
When Finn’s actions get him banned from his own world, Jess’s sense of responsibility for him sets her at odds with her family and friends, including Magnus, the young man who’s been courting her. Jess soon finds both her loyalty and her heart divided. Then danger from outside threatens to destroy both worlds—and both the young men she cares for.
The paranormal romance/love triangle is a fairly well-established trope in YA literature, and this is a competently written, engaging entry into that field. Sure to appeal to fans of Maggie Stiefvater’s “Shiver” series. ( )
  hbsweet | Aug 16, 2014 |
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Jess has heard the rumours, old folk tales of creatures that live beneath the water: dangerous shapeshifters with a taste for human children. She's dismissed them as crazy stories -- until her best friend is stolen and Jess discovers all the legends are true...Trying to rescue her friend, she meets one of them -- a kelpie -- but he turns out to be nothing like she imagined. Caught between two worlds, between kelpies and humans, and between mysterious Finn and brave Magnus, Jess must chose between what she's always known - and what lies beneath.… (more)

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