Nancy McKibben's Reviews > The White Forest

The White Forest by Adam McOmber
Rate this book
Clear rating

's review

liked it
bookshelves: fantasy, reviewed

The White Forest
By Adam McOmber

This book, a Victorian gothic, was described as “original” in several reviews. I might describe it in stronger terms. Odd. Singular. Bizarre. The ending, while logical in the context of the novel, was one of the weirdest I have ever read. My jaw hung open for an hour after I closed the book.

The novel is set in the heaths and forests of Hampstead Heath, where protagonist Jane Silverlake’s odd mother met a sinister end when Jane was a child. Like mother, like daughter - Jane possesses a peculiar gift, that of being able to hear the language of objects. Her gift isolates her until she is a teenager (which is to say, an adult, in Victorian terms), when she meets neighbors Madeline and Nathan. The three are inseparable until Nathan goes to war and returns changed.

Nathan involves himself in a London cult of the supernatural, while urging Jane to use her gift to help him discover the paradise promised by his cult leader. In pursuit of his cult (and with Jane’s possible help - did she or didn’t she?), Nathan vanishes, and Jane and Madeline become detectives determined to find him. And here, dear reader, I must draw the curtain lest I give away the ending. Actually, I could probably summarize all but the final two chapters without giving anything away, because I don’t see how anyone could see that ending coming.

The author writes well, and certainly sets a brooding tone, but his characters are not as simpatico as one might hope, and the more Jane discovered her true self, the less sympathetic I found her. If you are a fan of the weird and off-the-wall, by all means read this book - you won’t be disappointed.

1 like · flag

Sign into Goodreads to see if any of your friends have read The White Forest.
Sign In »

Reading Progress

January 27, 2013 – Started Reading
January 28, 2013 – Finished Reading
January 30, 2013 – Shelved
January 30, 2013 – Shelved as: fantasy
January 30, 2013 – Shelved as: reviewed

No comments have been added yet.