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Hold Back the Tide

4.05  ·  Rating details ·  1,374 ratings  ·  346 reviews
Everyone knows what happened to Alva's mother, all those years ago. But when dark forces begin to stir in Ormscaula, Alva has to face a very different future - and question everything she thought she knew about her past... ...more
Paperback, 300 pages
Published March 5th 2020 by Scholastic
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BoMo Yes.
Given the last chapter I doubt that there will be another book. It’s a really good book. …more
Given the last chapter I doubt that there will be another book. It’s a really good book. (less)

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Average rating 4.05  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,374 ratings  ·  346 reviews

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Apr 13, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: owned
Wilder Girls meets The Female of the Species in my first 4 star read of the year.

Why not 5 stars? It lacked gays.
C.G. Drews
Jun 14, 2020 rated it really liked it
This book really just softly held my hand, lead me to the edge of a cliff, and then shoved me straight on off. I am rattled to my bones and probably will weep softly into a shawl as I stand on the edge of the loch and wait to be devoured by monsters. Like how dare this book?? Also it was thoroughly excellent, captivating, unique and fresh and compelling, and also how dare it.

This is a story of monsters, both real and figurative.
I absolutely love monsters stories and cannot get enough of them. It
Claude's Bookzone
CW: (view spoiler)

Well now that I have regained my composure I can write a review.

I don't think the following section is too much of a spoiler but I will hide it anyway because I went in blind and that served me well. I think it is best to resist if you have any intention of reading this YA mystery horror book. (view spoiler)
Lizzie Huxley-Jones
Mar 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Okay hi, I’m not ok? You need to read this book. Ok ok I’m calm.

Hold Back the Tide is Melinda Salisbury’s newest book, released last week. When I read the first chapter I knew it was about a girl who lived with a murderer. What I did not expect was everything that followed.

Alva Douglas is planning to escape Ormscaula and the murderer she lives with, her father. But as she tries to leave, strange things start happening: screams in the night, shadows at the window, and girls going missing. And the
Bright Star
Mar 17, 2020 rated it liked it
I was loving everything in this book and then... the last chapter happened. I didn't expect that ending and I hated it.

Kira Simion
Sep 07, 2019 marked it as to-read
Shelves: 2020-to-read
First impressions: holy moly this is book cover goals. Who designed this? Thank you for creating this. My eyes are blessed!
Eleanor (bookishcourtier)
This was so creepy and cool. It took about 100 pages to really take off but after that I was pretty much unputdownable. If you want something short, quick and horrifying, I would recommend this book.
Kirsten Moody
May 25, 2020 rated it it was ok
I have mixed feelings about this book. I went into it expecting to have a rather tense atmosphere with Alva living with her Da that murdered her Mam except that's not what I got at all.
In my opinion Da was not portrayed in anyway as someone who had potentially murdered his own wife or would harm his child.
So the first 100 pages of Alva preparing to run away was very slow, and I wasnt engaged with her as a character and i couldnt tell where this book was going.
Then the plot twist happens half way
“I would have chalked it up to folklore, or ignorance. Ancient people using monsters to explain what they couldn’t understand. Yet all the while the creatures were waiting. Biding their time.”

Hold Back the Tide was surprising in a really, really good way. this was quietly poignant, the dreams and fears of a girl, alva, spun out over village politics and monsters and lore. it’s also been a long time since i’ve been hooked by an opening line, but this one got me:

“Here are the rules of livin
Tana 🌻 Cozyreadings

This was good! This is a vampire book, since the synopsis doesn't really make that clear!
I didn't like Alva as the main character, at ALL. She keeps being scared of her father, but if she had thought about it for 2 damn seconds, she must have known that her theories about him don't add up. (view spoiler)
Aug 07, 2020 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: fans of dark ya horrors

The first thing one needs to know before starting this book is that it's one hell of a scary book! So if you are not into gory, horror stuff, I would advise withholding from reading it. On the other hand, Hold Back the Tide contains quite a lot of cliches from YA genre, such as special snowflakes and abs-pretty boys. But worry not, those were quite pleasant, though a little bit eye-rolling.

The plot of the book revolves around the small village (or town) Ormscaula. If I am not mistaken it's some

Apr 16, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: bookbox-books
Something about Melinda Salisbury's writing style speaks to me. It's enchanting, atmospheric, it already gives stories a certain feel. So, when I saw her announcing this book I added it to the wishlist and when I discovered that this was the book in my Book Box Club, I couldn't be happier. Because, this means I get to talk to her about this book! How awesome is that?

And with this book she once again delivers. I'm gonna be honest here. For a long time I thought this was gonna be a four star read.
Apr 02, 2020 rated it it was amazing
4.5 stars! Oh. WOW.
♛ Garima ♛
I think I am obsessed with this kind of book covers! Currently reading The deep...
Bianca Visagie
To say I enjoyed this book would be an understatement. I could not put it down. I had to force myself to stop reading otherwise I wouldn't have slept. This is the perfect fantasy/horror standalone. It has a creepy atmosphere, monsters, an environmental message and so much more. Salisbury has written one of the best opening chapters and the plot just races on from there. The ending had me sobbing for days. If you want a well constructed YA horror (a completely underrated age group and genre pairi ...more
Jenny (Bookbookowl)
Jun 14, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Thank you so much to Scholastic Australia for sending me a copy of Hold Back the Tide, in exchange for an honest review!

Alva is living with her father, who she heard murder her mother years ago.  She is living her life by a set of rules she has created, out of fear that she will end up the same way.  Do not draw attention to yourself, If you can't be invisible, be useful and if you can't beat them, join them.  She has made herself as useful as possible - diligently checking and recording the lev
♠ Tabi⁷₈⁷ ♠
Jan 26, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
'It was the truth. All this time, it was the truth.'


Look, I'm not gonna pull any punches: this book messed me up in all the right ways. I came thinking it was just another random YA read but, directly from the start, it grabbed me and didn't let go until the end.

It is NOT a simple book—it is horror written masterfully with unexpected plot twists that kept me riveted.


I had guesses that something truly monstrous was afoot a few chapters in but I did not expect the sheer level of in-love-with-h
Jun 11, 2020 rated it it was ok
Want to see more...


Thank you Scholastic for this book in exchange for an honest review

Alright. So the first chapter is gripping as fuckk. I kid you not. The first chapter reached out and gripped my soul and I was fricken pumped to read this book. Honestly if you know a better opening chapter than let me know but until then, this one takes the cake and eats it too.
However, after the gripping first chapter I felt a little lost while I waited for the more gripping things to hap
Beth, BooksNest
Apr 28, 2020 rated it really liked it
Let's start off with one thing, the blurb of this book does not tell you what the book is about. So you are essentially going into Hold Back the Tide blind.  Now that's sorted - it is super hard to write this review without any spoilers, but this will be spoiler-free, but it will also be short.

Alva lives with her dad, a man she believes to be a murderer. She lives in constant fear of what he will do to her if she steps out of line and it is that fear that compels her to want to escape her small
After five consecutive reads that left me either mad or dying to feel something, a hero has finally risen. Hold Back The Tide, here's your time to shine.

I've finished this book last night, but I still can't wrap my head around it. Just thinking about it makes me want to scream incoherently for a few hours, but believe me when I say it's a good thing. As I just said, I went through several books that disappointed me a lot and I basically went into this one begging for it to be at the very least,
Apr 28, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2020-reads, horror

“Hold Back the Tide” is a gothic Scottish tale about the creatures who escaped from the loch and a girl desperate to escape her fate but when bodies start piling up she is determined to right the wrongs of her father only to learn that sometimes the cruelest punishment is the truth.

What was that ending?!?!

To start I had no idea this was a horror vampire story and for that I am grateful. From the first page I was completely entranced by this poor girl who had lived her life with a s
Apr 06, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The ending of this book was unreal. So, so, so good and brave and wow it hurt.

The setting in Scotland was just gorgeous. I loved the glimpses of dialect. I could definitely imagine the village and the mountains, and the house where Alva and her father live. It really is a delight to read.

Alva has been trying really hard to please her father, to not irritate him, to make herself indispensable - all because she thinks he is a murderer. Their job is to monitor the loch that supports the village, i
Jessi (Novel Heartbeat)
Aug 03, 2020 rated it really liked it


Wow. I don't really know what I expected going in. I saw Cait's (@paperfury) review where she said "this book softly held my hand, lead me to the edge of a cliff, and then shoved me straight on off" and went and bought it instantly. I didn't even really know what genre it was - the synopsis is very vague, so I thought it was a contemporary pushing thriller with maybe some possible paranormal elements. What I got was NOTHING like what I expected!

And I think that made me enjoy it more! I
Julia Ember
Jan 29, 2021 rated it it was amazing
A super compelling thriller full of creepy Scottish mythology -- atmospheric and hair-raising! Tension oozes from this book from its very first page. I am such a fan of Melinda Salisbury's work, and was delighted to find that her newest book in a different genre was every bit as gripping as her fantasy. ...more
Nina (Every Word A Doorway)
Dec 24, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: paranormal
So, mash up a historical setting in the Scottish Highlands, some horror, and a touch of girl power, and you basically get Hold Back the Tide. This book took me completely by surprise (well, partly because I'd forgotten what it was about). Loved the resilient heroine, the thought-provoking themes, and the suspenseful plot. I look forward to digging up other work by this author!

Be aware of the horror aspects (somewhat graphic at times), and do not read this as a bedtime story, and do not read this
Dec 23, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: publisher, blog-tour, ya
I am gutted. This book was absolutely fabulous (my first horror book to ever read, btws), but it insisted on ripping my heart out and now I'm shooketh.

This book started off calm. Well, relatively so. It was about as calm as one can be when the main character is living with a murderer. But if I thought things were crazy at the beginning, the rest of the book got even worse. The stakes kept getting raised and new information was increasingly revealed and it was just so good! The plot was just so w
Mar 29, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: signed-copy, own
I finished this book in two days and it took me longer to write a review. The reason for the delay is because the ending broke my heart into a thousand pieces. It has a great plot that opens up a discussion about the environment and how we humans are doing our worst when taking care of our planet. It also perfectly describes life and community of a very small town and how it can be mentally suffocating. I am usually not keen on reading horror stories, but I really really devoured this one.
Apr 03, 2020 rated it really liked it
This was brilliant. I very much enjoyed everything about this book, Melinda manages to create an incredible atmosphere and characters you become attached to very quickly. I cannot deny Mel broke my heart with this book, but I still love her. Damn woman.
Jul 04, 2020 rated it really liked it
this ruined me
Sophie Gabrielle
Aug 30, 2020 rated it it was amazing
...Well that completely destroyed me. Don’t think I’ll ever be able to write a review without crying.
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Goodreads Librari...: Page Number Correction for 9781407180298 5 20 Mar 20, 2020 08:23PM  

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Melinda Salisbury lives by the sea, somewhere in the south of England. As a child she genuinely thought Roald Dahl’s Matilda was her biography, in part helped by her grandfather often mistakenly calling her Matilda, and the local library having a pretty cavalier attitude to the books she borrowed. Sadly she never manifested telekinetic powers. She likes to travel, and have adventures. She also lik ...more

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