Friday, May 11, 2012

review: Hemlock by Kathleen Peacock

Hemlock by Kathleen Peacock
May 8, 2012
Katherine Tegen
Young Adult | Urban Fantasy
Hemlock #1
Pages: 400
Source/Format: Edelweiss/eGalley
Rating:  1/2
Author's Website | Goodreads
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | IndieBound

Mackenzie and Amy were best friends. Until Amy was brutally murdered.

Since then, Mac’s life has been turned upside down. She is being haunted by Amy in her dreams, and an extremist group called the Trackers has come to Mac’s hometown of Hemlock to hunt down Amy’s killer: A white werewolf.

Lupine syndrome—also known as the werewolf virus—is on the rise across the country. Many of the infected try to hide their symptoms, but bloodlust is not easy to control.

Wanting desperately to put an end to her nightmares, Mac decides to investigate Amy’s murder herself. She discovers secrets lurking in the shadows of Hemlock, secrets about Amy’s boyfriend, Jason, her good pal Kyle, and especially her late best friend. Mac is thrown into a maelstrom of violence and betrayal that puts her life at risk.

Kathleen Peacock’s thrilling novel is the first in the Hemlock trilogy, a spellbinding urban fantasy series filled with provocative questions about prejudice, trust, lies, and love.


So, here’s the deal about Hemlock by Kathleen Peacock: it’s about werewolves, a girl gets brutally murdered, and there’s a romance bubbling under the surface of this dreary town. And? I totally loved it.

Okay, so I compared Hemlock by Kathleen Peacock to Veronica Mars on Goodreads, and let me explain it a little bit because I think I might’ve confused a few people. First episode of Veronica Mars we find out that 1) Veronica’s BFF for life was murdered (some could say brutally); 2) there were the VERY rich and then the semi-poor, but not much of a middle class in Neptune. You guys? Hemlock has the same feel to how the town is structured. Also, Amy was part of the rich class, just like Lilly Kane. Also, ngl, Jason and Logan are kinda alike in their brooding, moody-ness; 3) Mac, our fierce narrator and MC, is set out to find out who murdered Amy—just like Veronica’s mission in the first season is to figure out murdered Lilly (the right person this time); 4) Amy appears to Mac in her dreams, just like Lilly does to Veronica and Jake. Also, I totally think these comparisons are freaking awesome. I heart Veronica Mars, and the fact that Kathleen Peacock made Hemlock like a paranormal version of Veronica Mars gives her 10,000 brownie points in my book. I can’t WAIT to see what is going to happen in the rest of the trilogy!

Now, there were a few bumps in the road for me. For one, the romance. It didn’t feel right in this book, especially since you know right away there’s going to be a love triangle and all you can do is roll your eyes and sigh. Also because Mac has the “what, they love me? NO WAY they possibly can’t I’m not that pretty!” attitude. Rwar. No, no, no. It just wasn’t working for me at all.

But other than that? I loved the new twist on the werewolves and that the public knows about them. THAT made me giddy because you guys? There’s totally political things happening in this book and you all KNOW how happy that makes me.

I also loved that Mac lived with her cousin, not her parents (granted, her mom is dead ((I think)) and her dad is gone. He left her in Hemlock) because it brought a whole DIFFERENT thing to the YA-no-parents cliché. Which I actually liked, because I don’t really like parents, but that’s a different story.

Yo, this book, it kept me turning the pages and I just HAD to know who the white wolf was. Like... I didn't guess it until Mac did and then I was like, "CRAP THE CLUES WERE RIGHT THERE!" le sigh le sigh. But honestly? Fans of Veronica Mars and mysteries will devour this amazing urban fantasy debut that rocks your socks off. I dare you to read it.

Other Reviews:

Books of Love: 5 Hearts
The Hiding Spot (also, a giveaway): Liked It
Beneath Shining Stars, I Read: 5 Stars


  1. Yep. If anyone is confused about the Veronica Mars comparison in my review, I'm pointing them right over here since you lay it out so clearly.

    I also thought this book was great -- loved the mystery, loved the small town, loved the virus paranoia. I did guess the killer toward the end but not the twist as to why that person did it.

  2. aw, thank you, Jen! I tried my best because I know I had somebody on Goodreads ask me why I compared the two.

  3. YAY, I'm glad you liked it!! I just finished it and could just not put it down after picking it up, so it was read in a few hours. It was awesome, and while I knew about the love triangle, I was for some reason completely okay with it (even though the not seeing it was kinda bad. But I think she was refusing to acknowledge it, since it was all about Amy). I can see why it would annoy someone though!

    But aaaah, it was awesome. And action-filled and sweet and creepy and predictable, while I still felt lost... Hahaha. Yeah, it's a good book. ;)

  4. I've read so many great reviews about this book, so I'm super excited to see that you really liked this book as well!! Hemlock just sounds totally awesome. The whole twist on werewolves, the mystery, just everything sounds so, so, so good. I'm definitely going to be buying this sometime soon!! Although, the love triangle doesn't sounds very good. Oh well, though. Still so excited to read it! Lovely review, Ashelynn! You've made me very excited to read this book. =)

    -Aneeqah @ My Not So Real Life

  5. I looooooved HEMLOCK and your review describes its awesomeness perfectly! I'm glad you enjoyed it so much and while I've never watched VERONICA MARS (one of the downsides of not living in the US), I'm tempted to do so now. :D

    Fictional Distraction

  6. Great review!! I really enjoyed this one too!

  7. This book sounds like a fun read! I haven't seen Veronica Mars yet(it's on my Netflix list), but sounds great. I don't know why more female characters can't be like, "Yes, I'm awesome! That guy should like me!" I'm totally curious about your dislike about parents now. You have me intrigued!

  8. @Rebecca, I agree re: the love triangle. It was just a little awkward and lack-of-chemistry for me. ;)

    @Aneeqah, yay, I'm glad! I hope you enjoy this one!

    @Carina, Veronica Mars is the best! I reeeally love it, and still watch it! Hee. Hope you enjoy HEMLOCK!

    @Preet, yay for Netflix! And whenever I'm in a love triangle, I always say, "I'm freaking awesome, of course they like me!" which as we all know is almost never, so, ah, well. And I don't have a great relationship with my parents, so that's where my dislike comes into play. ;)

  9. I'm totally late to the party, but I loved this review!!! It looks so freaking good and also Veronica Mars is quite possibly my favorite show and also why isn't Logan real? And I get a paranormal world version of Logan? Yes please!!!!!

  10. excuse my language, but: I FUCKING LOVE LOGAN! Like seriously, it makes me sad when I realize he isn't real. also! Jason is very much like Logan so YAY YAY YAY I lurve him.


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