Book Review: ‘The Huntress of Thornbeck Forest’ by Melanie Dickerson

(goodreads.com)

(goodreads.com)

About three things I was absolutely positive. First, Edward was a vampire The Huntress of Thornbeck Forest was a YA novel. (It’s a Christian romance marketed towards teens that can pass as adult fiction.) Second, there was a part of him […] that thirsted for my blood The Huntress of Thornbeck Forest was cheesy. (It truly was.) Third, I was unconditionally and irrevocably in love with him despite all of its shortcomings, The Huntress of Thornbeck Forest was still an enjoyable read. (This remains my verdict.)

Twilight references aside, the plot of The Huntress of Thornbeck Forest reminded me more of Meg Cabot’s Ransom My Heart than what the official description brands it as – a mash-up of “Swan Lake” and Robin Hood. There’s Odette, the beautiful daughter of a wealthy merchant who also happens to be the most notorious poacher in the region. There’s the love interest, Jorgen, the wealthy margrave’s forester tasked with finding and capturing the poacher who has been stealing the margrave’s game. Then there’s the fateful meeting between the two at a festival; sparks fly, hearts pound, and stars align. Just one catch though – Jorgen has no idea Odette is the poacher. Will the discovery of a local poaching ring cause her secret to be revealed? Will Jorgen and Odette band together to stop the poaching ring and fall in love? Most importantly though, will this synopsis ever end?

The only significant flaw of The Huntress of Thornbeck Forest is its cheesiness, which seeps through every page and colors my perception of the book as a whole. I cringed at least five times when I read the novel — there’s something about the way boys clamor around Odette in the hopes of becoming her husband that makes me raise my eyebrows. Additionally, the romance between the two characters – whose personalities and perspectives I enjoy – is infused with cheese. The way the Dickerson paints the importance of truth hinders the romance and adds an element of predictability. That predictability plays a part in the cheese factor.

However, the novel is worth reading, as Dickerson’s writing style is polished and descriptive. Her phrases, though not concise, are dense (basically, seemingly superfluous words really add to the reader’s understanding and appreciation of the novel) and elegant. Her word choice is commendable and at times impeccable, and her vocabulary is advanced (mainly because I didn’t know the definition of “margrave” but still…)

All in all, for a clean romance infused with cheese, The Huntress of Thornbeck Forest is a pretty good read; it’s engaging, well-written, and even adorable at times.

Rating: 6 out of 10
Publisher: Thomas Nelson (May 12th, 2015)
ISBN #: 9780718026240
Length: 320 pages (Paperback)
Source: Copy from Publisher

Valerie is sixteen. She attends a boarding school near Boston, where she writes, reads, and attempts to be a studious student. She's too lazy to write the rest of this bio, so follow her on Twitter @torquoiseworld because shameless self-promotion is alive and thriving!