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The Hollowing (Mythago Wood #4)

3.96  ·  Rating details ·  781 Ratings  ·  32 Reviews
A highly imaginative child, left brain-dead after a bizarre attack, vanishes without a trace. Months later, a body is discovered on the edge of a strange forest that is home to phantoms and mythagos. Now the boy's father must journey into these woods--and into his son's dreams--to save him.
Hardcover, 367 pages
Published July 1st 1994 by Roc Hardcover (first published 1993)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Anna  (Bananas!)
I read this 15+ years ago based on a Realms of Fantasy magazine review, and the memory of it has stuck with me. I almost want to read it again to see if I feel the same way about it.
I didn't love it at all, but it was fascinating and dark. It interested me in much the same way Exquisite Corpse by Poppi Z Brite and Under the Skin by Michael Fabre did - and I was turned off for many of the same reasons as with those books. There's a distance and coldness to the story. The characters are stark and
Jan 19, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Kārtēja „Mitago meža” cikla grāmata. Arī šo grāmatu ar iepriekšējām vieno tikai Mitago mežs un Tallis tēvs no grāmatas „Lavondyss”. Sižeta galvenā līnija ir sekojoša. Pēc vairāk kā gadu ilgas prombūtnes no Mitago meža atgriežas Tallis tēvs. Viņš ir diezgan izmainījies un saikne ar mūsu pasauli viņam rodas tikai, ja blakus atrodas Alex Bradly, pazudušās meitas draugs. Pēc kāda laika arī šis puisēns pazūd Mitago meža biezoknī. Skaidra lieta, ka viņa tēvs Ričards dodas viņu meklēt un atgriezt mūsu ...more
Lorina Stephens
Having read the last book (Lavondyss) first, I suppose I came ill-prepared for The Hollowing. I was disappointed. My reason for this is purely personal, having to do with character motivation and justification, both of which I feel are lacking in the main protagonist. There is the makings of a heart-breaking novel here, but it failed, in my opinion.

I realize I fly in the face of literary acclaim and public opinion. It's not the first time. In my defense all I can say is I'm a very critical reade
Michael Battaglia
After taking his last story into the roots of mythology about as far as he could comfortably go and still retain readers' abilities to follow exactly what he was trying to do, Holdstock pulls back slightly from that extreme and decides to go with a much more conventional story instead. Or at least conventional by his standards.

Set a couple years after Tallis, the young girl who was the star of the last book, vanishes into the woods, the book chooses to focus on a minor character who was one of h
Nov 17, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction-fantasy
I truly enjoyed reading this book. It was such a departure from my previous reads. Plus, I think the wheels are in motion for the next big wave of books - fantasy reading. Hello J.R.R. Tolkien!

The Hollowing is about Alex, a boy who is sucked into an under world of multi-dimensional fantasy. In order to stay alive, he creates historical figures ready to go to battle in order to protect himself. Alex's father, Richard, enters this fantasy world via "hollowings" and meets up with a team of explorer
K. Axel
I love the Mythago woods books! They give me the absolute best of both worlds, meaning the realm of the fantastical and the history of the real world. If I could pack everything I wanted into one book (or even series), this would definitely be it.

The Hollowing is no different. Once again, the reader returns to Ryhope Wood... and what a return!

Heather Gessling
Oct 29, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Dare to enter Ryhope Wood and see the adventures that await you! This is core fantasy literature. This author never dissapoints!
Apr 24, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 stars
Sep 22, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: couldn-t-finish
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Isabel (kittiwake)
When Tallis Keaton's father stumbles out of Ryhope Wood months after disappearing to look for his lost daughter, it starts a chain of events that leads to the disappearance and supposed death of young Alex Bradley. "The Hollowing" follows Richard Bradley's attempts to find his son several years later, with the help of a group of scientists who are camped in the wood studying the mythagos. It was never clear to me exactly what was so warped and dangerous about Alex's mythagos, and I found the end ...more
pretty damned good til about page 80 when suddenly really bad exposition shows up. really bad. it's as if holdstock took a potty break and the editor snuck in to "clear up" the story; so bizarre and intrusive i quit reading. too bad too, cuz i have so wanted to find some good fantasy.

i'm no stephen king fanatic, but have been in search of engaging fantasy ever since reading "eye of the dragon." very satisfying, especially by avoiding characters like farfetchal in search of long lost horshitlant
May 09, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of the wierd, intelligent and creepy
Shelves: 2010, favorites
A creepy, mystic read as always. Should be read before bedtime and in the evening for max experience. Brilliant and intelligent writing and execution.

Follows Richard who one day almost hit a naked man on the road holding a mask. The Moondream mask. Richard's son get obsessed with this man coming from Ryhope Wood. And one day he gets too close to the mask, too close to Ryhope and is taken. Richard starts is quest rescuing his son, but the wood is a dangerous place with tricksters and strange bein
May 02, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
I wasn't even aware this was part of a series and jumped into this with no prior knowledge (something I would never normally attempt), but it turned out I didn't really need to know that much. The story - strange, and dark, and somewhat psychological - turned out to be very intriguing and fairly self-contained. The best part of this book was its setting, the unpredictable, uneasy woods that can manifest dangerous mythical beings, as well as the excellent prose.
Jul 16, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Alkumetsä sarjan kolmas osa on ikään kuin sekoitus ensimmäistä ja toista osaa. Kirja on myyttejä ja taruja tulvillaan - jopa liikaa, niin että meno äityi välillä vähän hämyksi ja raskaaksi lukea. Kirjassa oli jotain samankaltaisuutta tähän sarjaan kuulumattoman Muinaisuuden kosketuksen kanssa. Molemmissa on pääosissa teini-ikäinen poika, joka pistää ns. haisemaan. Holvi metsään ei kolahtanut samalla tavalla kuin Metsän henget, mutta hyvä se silti oli.
Aug 25, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read this years ago and remembered it but not the title. I googled and googled and by random chance found it! Thank goodness! I read this last during a nasty bout with strep and with a surgery and boring hospital stay looming, I'm glad I rediscovered this entertaining book. I can well remember being sucked into the othetworld along with the character and feeling spooked by the sinister characters. It has that dangerous and mysterious world right under your nose feel.
Jan 30, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy-sci-fi
I put off reading this book for a long time because I really didn't like the third book in the series, which wandered too far away from the connected myths I loved about books 1 and 2, but The Hollowing recaptures the excellence of the series. Perhaps it was a little more predictable in its outcome than the first two books, as it conformed more to the structure of the heroic quest myths that it incorporated, but I still really enjoyed it.
Dec 10, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I found the third book in this series the most surreal so far - hard to follow, at times - but rich with often overlooked sources from myth & folklore. I'm still, hooked, though. Holdstock's prose is effortless in its lyricism, and I find myself devouring whole books. Or perhaps they've been devouring me.
Maybe it was because I read this book as the 3rd in the series (just started Avilion), but I had a hard time connecting it to the other 2 books. I also stuggled with Alex's part in the Mythagos and the concurrent plot of the Trickster/Coyote. I think my review will improve if I read the series again, or pehaps it will make more sense to me once I read Avilion.
Oct 21, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
What can I say, the cycle of Mythago Wood just gets better and better, book after book. These books are really haunting and take you to a whole new level of fantasy.
Don Twardowski
Jun 14, 2011 rated it liked it
I liked the beginning and part of the middle, but the book felt really disjointed as if two different people were writing it.
Nev Percy
Aug 02, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Awesome. I think I came late to this revisitation of Ryhope Wood (the one from Mythago Wood), but it was really good again.

Makes me want to go "bosky"!
Another rating: 9/10
as with the other books in this series, it is really quite good. i did not enjoy it as much as the first few, but it had some fine moments, and different mythological nods from previous outings.
Jan 29, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this at the time I read it. I have not gone back to see if it still is as enjoyable and has the same impact.
Mark Lacy
Dec 26, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Holdstock has an absolutely amazing (and creepy) imagination. He deserves more fame than I'm guessing he has.
Mar 15, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Excellent and creepy!
Serge Pierro
Aug 21, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
More of Holdstock's development of the Mythago series. Previous readers won't be disappointed. Good stuff!
Apr 12, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: re-read
1/16 Re-read. N.B. Adolescent boys are so tiresome to read about.
Oct 07, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
So weird and so powerful - loved it!
rated it it was amazing
Jan 11, 2014
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Robert Paul Holdstock was an English novelist and author who is best known for his works of fantasy literature, predominantly in the fantasy subgenre of mythic fiction.

Holdstock's writing was first published in 1968. His science fiction and fantasy works explore philosophical, psychological, anthropological, spiritual, and woodland themes. He has received three BSFA awards and won the World Fantas
More about Robert Holdstock...

Other Books in the Series

Mythago Wood (7 books)
  • Mythago Wood (Mythago Wood, #1)
  • Lavondyss (Mythago Wood, #2)
  • The Bone Forest (Mythago Wood, #3)
  • Merlin's Wood (Mythago Wood, #5)
  • Gate of Ivory, Gate of Horn (Mythago Wood, #6)
  • Avilion (Mythago Wood, #7)

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