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The Hallowed Ones

The Hallowed Ones - Laura Bickle As seen on Ed and Em's Reviews! And read my interview with Laura.The Hallowed Ones has to be the creepiest book I've ever read. I'll be honest, I was a little hesitant to pick it up - only because I'm not a big fan of horror. Horror flicks, haunted houses, scary stories - yeah, all of that? No can do. But the summary of this novel was just TOO GOOD to pass up. When I read another review on Goodreads stating that the horror these people face are vampires, and not the sparkling, "ooh, let's fall in love" vampires, my determination to read it was furthered. Vampires in an Amish community? Holy originality, Batman! Laura Bickle takes a real chance with this novel and in my opinion, she pulls it off brilliantly.Katie is of the Plain folk, or the Amish as most of us know them. She is getting ready for her Rumspringa, a time when Amish young adults have the chance to go out into the Outside and live with the English, following their lifestyles. She is excited to experience this and do so with the Amish boy she has grown up with and is sure she will marry, Elijah. What no one expects is the sudden danger that takes over the Outside and threatens to tear apart the carefully built world of the Plain folk. While horror is generally a genre that I don't touch, I found myself fascinated with the plot line and the characters. Katie is a strong young woman. She's courageous, brave and progressive. I would love to have her for a friend. She's loyal, and a true heroine. She wants the best for her people, but cannot stand as they turn their heads and feigned ignorance. My feelings toward Elijah can be summed up in three adjectives: pathetic, immature and arrogant. Katie deserves so much better. I loved reading as she stood up for herself and didn't let the customs of her community dominate her feelings. Alex is another character that I loved. While he is from a completely different background, he listens and actually cares about how Katie feels. Their interactions made me smile and I root for them one-hundred percent!There is drama beyond the fear of what roams in the dark in this story. The Hallowed Ones is a tale of darkness, betrayal and lies, but also of falling in love and discovering the person you want to be. The readers watch as Katie grows, learning who she needs to become so that she can survive and live without regret. It's not what you'd expect from a horror novel, because it is really so much more. This novel really has it all.And some other interesting things from the story: you know that saying, "You learn something new everyday!" The Hallowed Ones has scenes that could definitely apply to that phrase. I learned several things - including how to birth puppies in an uncomplicated pregnancy. This book is not only fascinating because of its premise, but also because it teaches you a few things about the culture of the Amish and different tales of mythology! Not what you'd expect for Vampires vs. the Amish, right? Except, while that is the main plot idea, that's not what the story is really about. This story is about staying true to your beliefs and keeping yourself when the rest of the world is at its end.Read this book. That is my advice to you.