October 2, 2012

The White Forest by Adam McOmber

The White Forest by Adam McOmber is a gothic novel set in Victorian England. It is mysterious, seductive, and has a magical quality to it that leaves you wanting more. The author does an excellent job mixing historical fiction with the gothic magic element in the story. The love triangle makes it more interesting, and when the mysterious disappearance of the young Nathan Ashe occurs, everyone is concerned, especially the two young women who loved him.

Book Description
In this hauntingly original debut novel about a young woman whose peculiar abilities help her infiltrate a mysterious secret society, Adam McOmber uses fantastical twists and dark turns to create a fast-paced, unforgettable story. 

Young Jane Silverlake lives with her father in a crumbling family estate on the edge of Hampstead Heath. Jane has a secret—an unexplainable gift that allows her to see the souls of man-made objects—and this talent isolates her from the outside world. Her greatest joy is wandering the wild heath with her neighbors, Madeline and Nathan. But as the friends come of age, their idyll is shattered by the feelings both girls develop for Nathan, and by Nathan’s interest in a cult led by Ariston Day, a charismatic mystic popular with London’s elite. Day encourages his followers to explore dream manipulation with the goal of discovering a strange hidden world, a place he calls the Empyrean. 

A year later, Nathan has vanished, and the famed Inspector Vidocq arrives in London to untangle the events that led up to Nathan’s disappearance. As a sinister truth emerges, Jane realizes she must discover the origins of her talent, and use it to find Nathan herself, before it’s too late.” – The White Forest

My Thoughts
The White Forest is a book that I instantly wanted to read. The description of it sounded so interesting that I started reading it the day I received it. I was drawn into this fantastical world within the first few pages of the novel and didn’t put it down until I finished it.

The main characters were created with a passion, and reading throughout the story shows how much the author took the time to make each one come to life on the pages. Jane is a very special person in the story, and as a reader, I felt like I could feel her pain, passion, and guilt about the disappearance of Nathan Ashe. Her struggle to help find him doesn’t turn out like I expected it would, but the story does end perfectly. The character of Madeline wasn’t my favorite out of the three main characters. However, she does serve her purpose in the story.

I won’t give anything away on the details of what unfolds in this novel; just know that it is an excellent read with surprising twists and turns throughout it. I highly recommend it.

* Thank you to the publisher of The White Forest, Touchstone, for providing me with a copy of this book for review. All opinions expressed are my own.

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