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Into the Hollow

4.17  ·  Rating details ·  48 ratings  ·  29 reviews
The hollow was the perfect place to hide.

Or so Free’s dad thought. His plan: flee California with Free’s five-year-old brother illegally in tow, hide out in the mountains of West Virginia, make fast cash during ginseng season, then escape to a nicer place where the law can’t find them. Free isn’t thrilled about living in a holler alongside drug dealers and thieves, but she
Paperback, 310 pages
Published November 6th 2018 by Owl Hollow Press
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Average rating 4.17  · 
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***Actual Rating: 4/5 Dreams-Unliving Stars***

”Idea 1082
A Rocket to the Moon—Two Seats”

Into the Hollow featured two teenagers, Free and Cole, living in the Appalachia Mountains Area, trying to figure out what was going on with their lives. When Free’s father went too far by dealing with the devil, her younger brother and her life was in serious jeopardy. They were hunted and threatened by the most notorious gangsters/drug dealers in the area so escaping their nightmare was hardly an opti

Wow, I haven't devoured a book like this in months!

I'm not quite sure what exactly I was expecting when I picked this book up, but it certainly wasn't the touching, profound read it turned out to be:
Wonderfully developed, damaged protagonists alongside a slew of amazing supporting characters, all of them struggling to survive and ultimately escape their bleak lives in a deprived coal town in the mountains of West Virginia. Love, friendship, family and loyalty are probably the prevailing themes i
Sunniva Dee
Jun 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book is absolutely beautiful. A deep, sweet, and subtly sensual YA that hits you smack in the heart and doesn't let up. It's a must-read for any YA lovers devoted to new voices they've never heard before, coming from characters they've never met before. I wouldn't have missed this delight for the world. ...more
Jammin Jenny
I really enjoyed this contemporary fiction novel I received via Netgalley. The story is set in The Hollow, in the Appalachian mountains of West Virginia. It's the story of a girl named Freedom, and her fight to find herself, save her family and get out of the hills. Good story telling and fun, believable characters. ...more
Oct 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
There are a lot of YA books out there. Some are fun, some are exciting, some are terrifying, but most aren't quality YA literature. This book is. Into the Hollow is full of yearning, helplessness, hopefulness. It was a heartbreaking read, yet you end it with your heart hoping for the best for Free and Cole. I really cannot recommend this enough if you like YA contemporary books. It provides all the feels and all the hope.

Thank you to NetGally and the publisher for a copy of this book.
Jan 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
Into the Hollow addresses the topic of poverty. Told with warmth and heart, it's a feel good and feel sad story all at once. We see how to overcome adversity in ways other than the typical. It teaches valuable lessons with loveable characters. I enjoyed this book. ...more
Alja Katuin
Sep 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
Ugly cries at work.. i loved this read!
Oct 12, 2018 rated it liked it
"I desperately wanted her to stay, and she desperately wanted to leave and never look back."
Freedom Paine survives in what is called the Hollow with her Dad and little brother. It is clear from the beginning that Free's Dad is always trying to do what he believes is the best for his family albeit a deluded sense of what is right and wrong. Unfortunately he ends up getting them in more trouble and winds up in jail himself.

Free has to protect her brother, nicknamed Little, who is almost like her o
Megan Leprich
Apr 29, 2019 rated it really liked it
Thank you so much to Owl Hollow Press and NetGalley for providing me with a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

This novel is set in the town of Poplar Beach, West Virginia where we meet 17-year-old Freedom who is living in a shack without water or electricity with her younger brother and her father. Neither of the children attend school and are not allowed to have any friends. Their father is always scheming ways to make money even if it means ripping people off while Freedo
Oct 29, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is the best NetGalley book I've read so far. I couldn't put it down. I loved Freedom and Cole and Little and crossed my fingers that the story would end on a positive note. Their lives were so realistic and sad, but they were able to overcome some of it. They had terrible home lives, but some good role models and people to help them succeed. And, honestly, Cole and Free had a very sweet relationship. Plus, her love for Little was so true.

And the writing was fluid and perfect.
I can’t seem to write this review. I’ve tried a couple of times now and I find myself trying to retell the story and all the great, awesome parts of this book instead of telling you what I love about it. You have to read this book for yourself. It was beautiful.

Since I can’t stop myself from telling you the story, instead I am going to just write up some bullet points about what I loved about this book and some things this book made me think about.

1. This isn’t a book you just read. This is a bo
Jennifer H.
Sep 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: arc-netgalley
Residing in the Hollow isn't about living - it's about surviving - something that both Freedom and Cole know all too well. Alike in their desperate need to see their hometown in the rearview mirror as soon as possible, Freedom and Cole's worlds collide in this gritty, heartbreaking, all to real tale.

Squatting in a shack in the mountains of West Virginia with no electricity and a father who is convinced that their luck is about to change, Freedom's only purpose in life (according to her) is taki
Sep 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley, read-2018
Thank you to Netgalley for the opportunity to read Into The Hollow before its release date of November 6, 2018 (my birthday)!

This young adult novel is set in the town of Poplar Branch, West Virginia, in the holler. We meet Freedom Paine, 17, who is living in a shack with her younger brother and father. Neither Free nor her brother attend school or have any friends (in fact, it’s not allowed, it’s almost as if they are in hiding). Her father goes out and tries to scheme money where he can and is
Also on my blog, Snug Shelf.

Into the Hollow really surprised me, in a good way. I was expecting a novel about a girl finding love despite difficult life circumstances, but what I got was much more. This is a novel about family, hope, poverty, grief, and yes, love. It was unique, heart-wrenching, and pulled me in from the start. I loved Free, Cole, Little, and the supporting characters who helped them on their way and added context to this world.


1) Slow-building romance

As I'm sure we can al
Nov 07, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2018, netgalley-arc
The story is told in a way that reveals the many sides of Free, first as the main provider in her family and second as a student with a bright future. The introduction to Cole was also done well because he shows a different side to a similar life. There was a good balance between the darkness of their struggles and the brightness of their potential as well as how else life could look like for Free and Cole, separately and together.

The story started suspenseful with secrecy and twists and slowly
Brooke Lorren
Oct 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Into the Hollow was a really sweet book in a contemporary setting.

Free, our heroine, has a little brother that she loves, and a daddy that isn't too smart. They are trying to survive in this run down old shack without electricity or running water in a poor county where nobody seems to escape from.

She works at the grocery store, where she meets Cole. Cole is in a similar situation to her: his family has also made a lot of unwise decisions, and it seems like he's the only responsible teenager in t
Nov 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
Free, her father and brother are living in a shack without electricity in West Virginia. Free doesn't have any friends or go to school, but she does have a job at a grocery store while her father devises plans to make money. Free doesn't have any friends, her background is mysterious, but from the beginning she is not helpless. She is doing what she can to help her family.

The book is written from 2 POVs. We meet Cole, a senior in high school who also has a desperate home life. His mother is jun
Dec 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is a gem.

There's so much to love about this novel. The writing is so smooth and fluid; the dialogue is realistic and the story glides along the page. Lynn Vroman has an amazing style and a great talent. I haven't read any of her other work but will absolutely make a point to do so soon. Honestly, there's such a lovely fluidity to her work that I am straight up jealous.

The story is heartbreaking and hopeful at equal turns. The characters are rich and rounded. It's not often we see a group o
Jan 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
Into the Hollow is more than a YA contemporary , it’s also a coming of age story which portraits the value of hard work, the importance of family and the difference realist and fake dreams. In this story we follow the perspectives of our two main characters : Freedom and Cole and the cruel reality of their lives. Not only that but how their environment also affects the decisions they make about their future.

This story is heartbreaking but also a warm fuzzy one (trust me ) . It’s deep and filled
Amy Lawson
Thank you to NetGalley for opportunity to review before release date of November 6th!

People growing up in the Hollow have a difficult time. For Freedom (Free) and her young brother, Little, getting though a day can be difficult. Squatting in the Appalachian mountains with their father, Free's entire purpose in life is to care of her young brother. Until she meets Cole. New love and tragedy occur for both Cole and Free as their young lives spiral.

A love story filled with tragedy and sadness, but
Laura ( Latteandbooks )
Nov 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc, netgalley
This book was beautifully heartbreaking

This book comes in two POV’s Cole’s and Freedom. It took me till about 20% to get into the book but once I did I wasn’t able to put it down. We meet Free who meets Cole while she’s working at the grocery store. She lives with her dad and brother in a shack that doesn’t have electricity. (I think will all need to do that at some point to just be able to unplug from the world) Cole is a senior in high school and he doesn’t have the greatest home life with thi
Jul 14, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I want to shout from the rooftops like a crazy lady: READ THIS BOOK!!!! I went into this book thinking that I was going to enjoy it. It exceeded that expectation. I rooted for these characters. I cried for these characters. I yelled at these characters. Most importantly, I found myself PROUD of these characters. For a truthful insight into the poverty and struggles of the mountains of West Virginia, read this book. For a story so unbelievably heartfelt and characters that are absolutely wonderfu ...more
Oct 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
I loved this! If you are a fan of Netflix’s Ozark show then you have to pick this one up! Weird comment, I know but even though it’s West Virginia vs. Missouri it feels so similar, the desperation of the setting and the people.

Free is such an interesting character, so tough and frail at the same time. Cole is so well written, his perseverance and decency in such a horrible situation was almost beyond comprehension. The relationships that develop and the dialogue were so real.

The journey and gro
Ivana Mendez
Sep 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Darby Karchut
Dec 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This story tugged at my emotions in all the good ways. I'm not a huge fan of contemporary YA, but Lynn Vroman's INTO THE HOLLOW stole my heart. I do love strong family ties, and the bond between the characters, especially Free and Little, was a pure delight. Highly recommended. ...more
Oct 17, 2018 rated it really liked it
~I received an ARC of this book on NetGalley in exchange for an honest review ~


Lynn Vroman's Into The Hollow is a beautiful story about survival, the harsh landscape of rural Appalachia, destructive families, poverty, friendship and the striking, unforgettable rawness of love. The story follows Free, a girl who loves her younger brother Little more than anything and follows her dad's "winging it" plans which always fall through because she has no choice if she wants her family to stay togethe
Deidre Policz
rated it really liked it
Mar 25, 2019
Oct 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
What a fantastic and deeply engrossing story! I loved the unusual setting in dirt poor coal country, and the circumstances of the characters fit the setting quite well. The characters had so much depth and the story was so plausible that it was hard not to try to read cover to cover in one sitting. I laughed, my heart broke a bit, and I cheered on our hero and heroine as they grew and found their way in their world. I highly recommend this book to readers.
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Feb 25, 2019
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Born in Pennsylvania, Lynn spent most of her childhood, especially during math class, daydreaming. Today, she spends an obscene amount of time in her head, only now she writes down all the cool stuff.

With a degree in English Literature, Lynn used college as an excuse to read for four years straight. She lives in the Pocono Mountains with her husband, raising the four most incredible human beings o

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