Wednesday, April 25, 2012

BLOG TOUR: Hemlock by Kathleen Peacock (ARC Review + Giveaway)

Genre:Young Adult, Fantasy, Supernatural
Publication.Date  May 8th 2012
Published By:  Harper Collins  | 
WebsiteKathleen Peacock

Hemlock - Goodreads
My review copy:ARC received from the publisher in exchange for an honest review
Where to get:

Mackenzie and Amy were best friends. Until Amy was brutally murdered.

Since then, Mac’s life has been turned upside down. She is being haunted by Amy in her dreams, and an extremist group called the Trackers has come to Mac’s hometown of Hemlock to hunt down Amy’s killer: A white werewolf.

Lupine syndrome—also known as the werewolf virus—is on the rise across the country. Many of the infected try to hide their symptoms, but bloodlust is not easy to control.

Wanting desperately to put an end to her nightmares, Mac decides to investigate Amy’s murder herself. She discovers secrets lurking in the shadows of Hemlock, secrets about Amy’s boyfriend, Jason, her good pal Kyle, and especially her late best friend. Mac is thrown into a maelstrom of violence and betrayal that puts her life at risk.

Kathleen Peacock’s thrilling novel is the first in the Hemlock trilogy, a spellbinding urban fantasy series filled with provocative questions about prejudice, trust, lies, and love. (Goodreads)

"I stared into Jason's eyes, and for a split second I had that feeling you get when an elevator drops too quickly. You know there's a floor underneath your feet, but it feels like you're falling."
"Other girls had moms who made them peanut butter sandwiches and dads who read bedtime stories and checked under the bed for monsters. I had a mother who skipped out on me sometime before my first birthday and a father who was wanted for everything from gunrunning to selling peyote out of the trunk of his car."

     Dark, sexy, mysterious and deliciously addictive, Hemlock by Kathleen Peacock paints a frighteningly realistic world where werewolves are nothing more than regular humans affected by lupine syndrome, and the people who hunt them - even more fierce, unpredictable and dangerous than their prey. Full of underlying meaning, symbolism, profound messages, bloody secrets and thrilling developments, this book will blow your mind. Auuuuuuu!!!! 

It was our fault Amy was dead. All of our faults. 
The best friend who had bailed; the boyfriend who had been running late; the guy who hadn't answered his phone.
Six days ago a werewolf had killed Amy, and we were each to blame.

     Mac's best friend, Amy, was brutally murdered. Her body - shredded to pieces and discarded in a dark alley. A white werewolf was seen at the scene, the same one suspected of killing four other people, and infecting eight more with lupine syndrome. Now, the Trackers are in town and everyone is acting weird. People are both scared and desperate to hunt the white werewolf down, capturing and imprisoning as many others as possible in the process. Werewolves are evil, ferocious, unstoppable. They're not human, there is nothing human about them. All they feel is burning thirst for blood and hunger for flesh - they can't be reasoned with! But what if all that is not true? What if there's something entirely different going on in the eerie town of Hemlock? Haunted by the ghost of her dead friend and tormented by gilt, Mac's determined to do everything in her power to uncover the mystery behind Amy's death. 

     When it comes to YA novels featuring popular supernatural creatures (like vampires or angels), in most of the cases I end up being disappointed or at least not entirely satisfied. Werewolves are no different. It's very rare to come across a werewolf novel that would be good. It's even more rare to find one that would be thrilling and thought-provoking. And finding a werewolf book that would be realistic, thematically poignant and emotionally harrowing? That's just virtually impossible. And yet there's Hemlock. An absolute GEM of a book. A werewolf novel that is not so much a supernatural thriller, but rather a bone-chilling mystery, with elements of drama, romance, urban fantasy and paranormal. Kathleen Peacock created a world that is entirely original, yet very believable at the same time. I believed in her werewolves. They didn't seem like some weird mythical creatures, they seemed real, painfully authentic, and at times more humane than humans themselves. In fact, I don't even think about this book as a werewolf novel at all - Peacock's werewolves are metaphors for all things and people misjudged, alienated, wrongly accused and ostracised. Victims of prejudice - feared and hated for being different than the rest of the society. And the Trackers are not the mighty saviours in this scenario. They're the bullies, the inquisitors. Cold, rabid, discriminating, with hearts poisoned with hate and spite, they're a vivid example of everything that's wrong with modern society. Yes, I find Hemlock to be a very three-dimensional read, with layers upon layers of world and character building. Yes, it's absorbing and entertaining, full of tension, and with a swiftly moving storyline that will keep you on the edge of your seat. Most of all, though, it will make you stop and ponder the many issues it brings to vivid light. It has the capacity to both excite and inspire. Hemlock is full of lessons. It's no cheap thrill. It's a memorable book, and one that should be taken seriously, as it really has something important to say. 

     From the very first pages of this book, I felt drawn into the world Kathleen Peacock so magnificently crafted. I love dark and creepy, and Peacock does it really well. I found myself connecting to the characters in more than one way. The author did a really great job depicting their pain, fear and guilt. Mac's internal struggle was very convincing and therefore absolutely heartbreaking, her grief and desperation - spilling from every page. It wasn't, however, overwhelming or overdone. Mac didn't just sit around feeling sorry for herself and depressing everyone around - she took action, decided to find the murderer herself, and she focused all her energy on it. I really liked that about her. 

     Overall, this was a really great book. Much better than I ever expected it to be. I devoured it in just one day, literally couldn't put it down and then thought about it long after. I strongly recommend this book to everyone!

About Kathleen

Kathleen spent most of her teen years writing short stories. She put her writing dreams on hold while attending college but rediscovered them when office life started leaving her with an allergy to cubicles.

Hemlock, her first novel, will be released on May 8th by Katherine Tegen Books/HarperCollins

Twitter: @kathleenpeacock

Author Interview with Kathleen Peacock

E: Evie 
K: Kathleen
E: Welcome to Bookish Kathleen! Thank you for taking the time out of your busy schedule to join us here today! Your upcoming YA novel, Hemlock, is a stunning and wildly compelling debut – a perfect blend of murder mystery, supernatural and romance! Would you mind telling us who or what inspired you to write it?
K:  *blush* Thanks so much for having me!
It was actually inspired by the song “It’s Been Awhile” by Staind. I was listening to it while walking to work and had an idea for a scene that would become the basis of the book.
E: How would you describe it in 5 words?
K: Werewolves! Murder most foul! Kissing !
E: Hemlock features a cast of vibrant characters that are very well-drawn and easy to connect with. Were any of them inspired by people in your own life? Which of your characters do you feel is the most like you?
K: Thank you! I’m so glad people are connecting with the characters!

Sadly, I didn’t have a Kyle or Jason in high school, and none of the characters are based on people I know in real life.

Of the characters, I definitely think Mac is the most like me. I’m not brave or resourceful like she is, but I have a hard time telling people how I feel. It can take me a long time to open up, and I sometimes come off as a bit guarded or aloof.
E: What was the most difficult part of the novel for you to write?
K: I love romantic movies and books, but I find romantic scenes really hard to write. I have one poor friend who has probably seen multiple drafts of every kissing scene I’ve ever written.
E:  Have you always wanted to become a writer? At what point in your life did you decide that this was the right career path for you?
K: For most of my childhood and teens, I wanted to be a writer. I put that dream on hold for a number of years after high school (largely, I think, out of fear) and then rediscovered it when I started blogging.
E: How do you approach writing a new novel? Are you a plotter or a pantser?
K: I’m a pantser turned plotter. I find it easier to work with mystery plotlines if I have an idea of what clues are getting dropped when.
E:  Do you ever experience writer’s block? If so, how do you deal with it?
K:  I think everyone experiences writer’s block. Sometimes, I need to get away from the computer for a few hours. Other days, I have to keep my butt in the chair and plow through a few pages. Sadly, it can be hard to figure out which option will work.
E:  What advice would you give to aspiring authors interested in writing YA novels?
K: Have faith in yourself and love what you do.
Read often and read widely.
Read YA but also read outside of YA.
E: What’s next in line for you? Are you working on a new project now? When can we expect the next book in the Hemlock Series?
K: I’m currently working on the second Hemlock book (which I think will be released next year). There will be one more Hemlock book after that.
E:  Which of your favorite books would you recommend everybody to read?
K: The Princess Bride by William Goldman. Most people have seen the movie, but a lot of people don’t realize it’s based on a terrific book.

Kathleen, thank you so much for joining us today!  
I loved Hemlock so much and am looking forward to reading the next instalment in the series!
I am a fan!

Huge THANK YOU to Shannon from Harper Collins Canada for the opportunity to read and review this wonderful book!

❤ ❤ ❤GIVEAWAY❤ ❤ ❤ 

I'm giving away my lightly read ARC of Hemlock!

Enter through Rafflecopter below!
Ends: May 20th
(ENTER AFTER THE PAGE BRAKE -> click:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤
About the Author
Evie is the Blogger behind Bookish. She enjoys reading many different genres, especially YA, Paranormal, Contemporary Fiction and Fantasy.
She loves talking to authors and is always happy to welcome them for interviews, and guest posts. She also likes spreading the love for awesome books and  chatting with fellow book-worms.
You can find Evie here: Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads | Shelfari | The Library Thing


Unknown said...

I am so excited for this release! Hemlock sounds so intriguing!

samantha35 said...

Love the cover- looks like a great book!

Tiffany Holme said...

OMG!! Thank you so much for doing this giveaway!! I can't even tell you all of the ways that I am excited for this book!!

Sara @ Forever 17 Books said...

I haven't read a lot of werewolf books but this one stands out! I can't wait to read it and I love how the author used 'kissing' as one of her 5 words to describe it! lol Thanks for the giveaway! :)

Felicia said...

I have been dying to get my hands on a copy of Hemlock! I think it'd be pretty hard to write romance scenes too, because it's so hard to describe the emotions going through the characters :)

Thanks for hosting the giveaway!

Anonymous said...

I really like her advice to read often and read widely. I tend to stick to the same genre and need to try new things. YA is great, but there are other good books out there too.

Thanks for the chance to win! Can't wait to read this one.

Anonymous said...

There's been a lot of Twitter talk about this book, so I'm very excited to read it! It's an interesting take on a familiar topic - thanks for the great review, Evie!

Emily Blake said...

I'm super excited for this one because it comes out on my birthday! Plus I love the cover!! :)

M.A.D. said...

Same here, I LOVE that cover!!! And I like what Kathleen said about *loving what you do* ... excellent advice :)

Evie said...

After your review this book is on my wishlist now! The concept seems really interesting and intense. And I'm really curious about the romantic scenes in this book.
Thanks a lot for the giveaway!

Michelle Chew said...

I was smiling at the "Auuuuuuu!!!!" you posted up there. I've enjoyed reading your interview, especially on the subject of writing. Great interview!

Thanks for having the giveaway!

Anonymous said...

I truely love books about werewolves! I can hardly wait to read Hemlock. The way it was discribed made it sound really amazing!

Anubha said...

Day before yesterday I came across this book and read it's blurb, Instantly I was like I want it right now.... Thank you very much Evie for giving a chance to win it... :D

Holly said...

Hemlock sounds really good! Thanks for the chance to win!

Ellisa said...

Honestly, it's been a while since my last read about werewolf book. I find the synopsis of Hemlock intriguing, and I think I want to find out more about this book when the author describes it as : "Werewolves! Murder most foul! Kissing!"
Thank you for hosting the giveaway! And good luck for the author in working on book #2 of Hemlock series!

Gale Nelson said...

Really looking forward to this one! thanks for the give away. Gale

Mary Preston said...

Such a rave review jumps HEMLOCK to the top of my reading list.

Unknown said...

Hemlock is definitely on my wishlist, it's been there for a long time. I'm craving a good werewolves story and Hemlock seems like 'something else' in the trend, so I'm excited to read it. :)

And I laughed (in a non-meaning way, of course) at Kathleen mentioning her poor friend getting every kissing scene she'd written. I'm equally bad at writing romantic scenes, so I understand her completely! They seem silly and easy to write, but it's just the opposite. The writer has to show a certain skill to make the scene hot/romantic/adorable and not... well, ridiculous. :)

Thanks for the chance to win this book!

Carti cu Colti said...

I love Hemlock cover and the interview is great.And Thank you for this!

PuttPutt1198Eve said...

I'm a lot like the author in that it takes me a while to warm up/open up to people in a new situation. I think that's just the way a lot of people are. Not many people have the courage it takes to put themselves on the like right away!

TayteH said...

LOVE the excepts at the beginning of the review. :D *swoon

Werewolves. They're always good. :D

Christina said...

I totally think kissing scenes would be the most difficult to write. Get it wrong and it can be soooo wrong. haha. Or just awkward.

Amy said...

I am so excited to read this book!! It's next on my list!! I love the cover, and even cooler I love the details on the chapter pages inside! After reading your fantastic review I am even more excited to get to it. Great interview too! I love the song It's Been a While! I also love the book The Princess Bride. One of my favorites actually!!

Tore923 said...

I really want to read this book. It sounds very good. Please enter me in contest.

Totally Booked Solid said...

i admit I squealed when i saw you were giving Hemlock away

MomBlogger said...

Sounds like a book my YA readers would love!

Barbara E. said...

This is the first review I've read on Hemlock and now I'm very interested in reading it. I enjoyed the interview and the chance to learn more about Kathleen Peacock as well.

Lexie said...

LOVELY review. G-d, I want this book. O_O I've grown rather weary of werewolf books that follow the same old trend, but every review I've seen of this one has been touting its brilliance--it just sounds so breathtaking and original and genuinely emotional and I WANT IT. *-* Plus, Kathleen Peacock is ridiculously fantastic.

Denise Z said...

I so want to read Hemlock. I just have to know what happens. Thank you for taking the time to share with us today and for the lovely giveaway opportunity.

Christyna_BM said...

I'd love to read and review it. Thanks!

Erin W. said...

Brilliant review! For a little while I was tired of werewolf books, but clearly this book is excellent and I can't wait to read it.

Thanks for the giveaway!

Anjelica said...

I love werewolf books and this one looks like a fantastic read! Loved the interview with Kathleen!!!

Quanie said...

OMG! Thank you so much for this awesome giveaway!:D And this book sounds actually good.

Natalia Belikov said...

Evieeeeeeee! my dearest dear!

You know what? I wasnt excited about this release at all. AT ALL! I am a little bit tires of so many paranormals and I have never been a huge fan of werevolves but... seriously? your review blew me away!! you always blow my mind with your qords my dear! I had no idea this book was so much more than a YA paranormal. I am so glad to see that this book actually have some meaningful content! I am glad to know that, once I dive into this book, I will learn something from it! It doesnt bother me reading fun paranormals, but why cant they have beautiful messages and lesson as many contemporary books do? Dont take me wrong, I LOVE paranormals, but so many have come out, so many of them I have read, that I get a bit tire of them.
Thanx for your thoughts my dear, what would I do without you very reliable opinion? =) Gamsamida! or whatever XD

have a kick-ass weekend my dear! ^.^

Imgonna go have some kimchi now! yum!! I bought a huge package of it! 1 full kg of yummy and sexy kimchi! lol!

Natalia Belikov said...

I forgot, thanks for the giveaway my dear!! kyaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!!

The Little Green Art Witch said...

This sounds like an amazing book. I love that it is a dark mystery and not only a werewolf book (I love werewolves!).

Thanks so much for doing such an awesome giveaway!


zapkode.marie said...

{new follower here}

I love that the book was inspired by a staind song. It's amazing where inspiration has the ability to decide what an artist will or will not write and this seems like an amazing book. I can't wait to read it. Thank you for sharing.


Cherry said...

Thank you for the chance to win! :)

Cherry Mischievous

K . R . Guidera said...

Thank you so much for this giveaway - I've had my eye on this release for a while now!

Andreea Pop said...

I've been waiting for this book for a long time! Thanks for the giveaway!

roro said...

I am so excited for this release!Thanks for the giveaway!

Aline Tobing said...

Thanks for the giveaway. Have to admit I was drawn to the book first by the gorgeous cover but then the synopsis is pretty awesome :)

Anonymous said...

I always love when I find someone with the same favourite book as me. The Princess Bride is an amazing book and one that I think everyone needs to read. I'm a bit of a book pusher - I forced my mother, sisters, brothers and friends to all read it. It's now my sister's favourite book too.

Thanks for the giveaway. This book looks amazing. It's been on my to-read list since I found out about it last week.. okay, so not long but it does look amazing :)

Cassandra M said...

I've heard so many good things about Hemlock but after reading your review, I am definitely going to have to pick it up!

And as much of a bookworm as I am, I haven't read The Princess Bride.. how bad is that? And oddly enough, the book I am currently reading mentions it a couple of times. Looks like I need to go and pick it up!

Thanks so much for the giveaway and as always, great review!

Courtney N. said...

I had heard very little about this book until now, so THANK YOU for doing this review. I'm looking forward to reading this one :)

Karen said...

I have been longing for a copy of this book! It is so cool that it came to her from a song!

Ange said...

I have been hearing such great things about this one and the cover is amazing! Great interview! I love the interviews with authors when ppl do them. :)

Sherina the Monster. said...

Thank you for the giveaway! I've never heard this book before but because of your review I've known that this was such a good book. The cover's great. I ♥ it. ;)

Nikki said...

I loved The Princess Bride movie, and can't believe I've never read the book! Puttin' that on The List now!

Bookie Bee said...

I love her advice to read widely... Im all for it! I myself dont stick to any specific genre and reads whatever picks my interest!
Have been heariing great reviews about this book on YouTube and other blogs...cant wait to read it!...would love to win a copy of it!

Kindlemom said...

I absolutely loved this book too!
Great review and interview!!

Ashley Correa said...

This book sounds Amazing!
Good job with the review and interview (makes me want to read the book even more)


Gaby Pendragon said...

I've read so many good things about Hemlock and now with your review and this interview I know I just have to read this book!

Hazal said...

Yes! I want to read Hemlock very badly. Thank you very much for the giveaway. It is very generous of you to make it international!

Megan said...

Great interview! I can't wait to read this one! I can image that romantic scenes would be tough to write. I would get embarrassed!

Kimberly Lim said...

This is awersome...
I love it.
Great interview as well.
I'm so rooting for this book...
Thanks for the giveaway

Anonymous said...

Awesome review and interview! 5 stars, then it must be good.

Anonymous said...

Loved the giveaway and the interview!!!! Thanks!!!!

Patri said...

This is awesome... I love it.
I want read it!! :D
Thanks for the giveaway

FireStarBooks said...

WOOT! Canadian authors represent! I can totally understand how writing romance scene can be hard! I have a lot of troubles!

Phantom Book Blog said...

I had no idea that this book was about werewolves, I just added it to my GoodReads because of the pretty cover. noted d:

Kelly said...

That's kinda funny that romantic and er Kissing scenes are difficult to write. But, if I think about it, it surely would be. How do you even get in the mood to write a kissing scene??

kristina shields said...

I SOOO want to read this book! I read the beginnining of it on harper site. great interview and thx for the giveaway!

Silverlight said...

Thanks for the great review! After reading so many people raving about this book, I added it to the top of my TBR pile.

DannaMarieG said...

Hemlock sounds very intriguing. I have put it on my to read list and I cannot wait to read it.

Alicia said...

I'm not normally drawn to werewolves in story books, but you've convinced me to add this to my TBR list! Great review and thank you for the chance to win the book!!

*logs into Goodreads to add to "to-read" list*

Sarah Elizabeth said...

I love books about werewolves, and I can't wait to read Hemlock!

rosia_lady said...

Great interview, I think that Hemlock is an amazing book. I love fantasy and supernatural stuff.

Lori said...

AHHH! So excited that your doing this giveaway. These books are amazing

Irina said...

The cover is amazing! And the book sounds just perfect!
Thank you for the giveaway and for making it international...:)

Astri Nasthasia Videlia said...

Nice question.. --> "What was the most difficult part of the novel for you to write" .. not all people can wrote a romantic scene.. even they got it in their life.. :)

Thank's for this giveaway... and making it International.. ^^

Sonia said...

I am highly anticipating this. It sounds unique that the werewolves in this novel are caused by lupine syndrome. I'd like to figure out more about the syndrome. By the way, I love the cover! Great review and interview! ;-)

Kari said...

Looks like a great book! Thanks for sharing your review and for the great giveaway!

Unknown said...

I love love LOVE wolves. If I could I would totally go for that virus. Bloodlust aside. :P LOL thanks for the giveaway!!! dying to read and review this one!

Jennifer said...

I have been hearing so much about this book. I can't wait to read it. Thanks.

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