Behold The Bones
Beware The Wild #2
Author: Natalie C. Parker
Release Date: Februray 23, 2016
Rating: 4 Birds
Candace “Candy” Pickens has been obsessed with the swamp lore of her tiny Louisiana town for . . . forever. Name any ghostly swamp figure and Candy will recite the entire tale in a way that will curl your toes and send chills up your spine.
That doesn’t mean Candy’s a believer, however. Even though she and her friends entered the swamp at the start of summer and left it changed, Candy’s the only one who can’t see or feel the magical swamp Shine. She’s also the only one who can’t see the ghosts that have been showing up and spooking everyone in town ever since. So Candy concentrates on other things—real things. Like fighting with her mother and plotting her escape from her crazy town.
But ghosts aren’t the only newcomers in Sticks, Louisiana. The King family arrives like a hurricane: in a blur and unwanted—at least by Candy. Mr. King is intent on filming the rumored ghostly activity for his hit TV show, Local Haunts. And while Candy can’t ignore how attracted she is to eighteen-year-old Gage King and how much his sister, Nova, wants to be friends, she’s still suspicious of the King family.
As Candy tries to figure out why the Kings are really in town and why the swamp that had previously cast her aside now seems to be invading every crack in her logical, cynical mind, she stumbles across the one piece of swamp lore she didn’t know. It’s a tale that’s more truth than myth, and may have all the answers . . . and its roots are in Candy’s own family tree.
An awful lot can happen in a small town like Sticks, and if you don’t believe me then you need to pick up the Beware The Wild series by Natalie C. Parker. With it’s southern Gothic vibe and tales of magic and ghosts, I promise you there is nothing like it in Young Adult right now – and you need it in your life.
BEHOLD THE BONES starts off as every great book should, with a bunch of people standing in a privates cemetery bordering a swamp almost everyone is scared of, discussing the family curse. Add in some Clary Moonshine and a heat that would make the Devil grab a fan and you have the beginning of a beautifully twisted tale.
We pick up pretty much where BEWARE THE WILD leaves off, so while you could technically read them out of order, I don’t suggest it. There are countless references to the first book as well as a full on spoilers to it’s ending.
I am happy to report that we have the same cast of friends in BEHOLD THE BONES, and for once I didn’t have any trouble with the POV switch up. Normally when a book sticks to the same town and friends, but swaps POV fully I feel like I’ve lost something, but Miss Parker does not disappoint. Each of her characters are crafted so well, that they all can hold up a story and make it their own.
Candace’s struggles come from finding her place in Sticks, just long enough so that she can get the hell out of Dodge the second she is 18. She’s dealing with medical issues that everyone else seems to care about but her, as well as being the only person who repels Shine and can’t seem to see the ghosts everyone else swear are there. If I were her, I’d have lost my mind long ago – but the hell if she isn’t tough as nails. Let’s throw i the fact that a family has renovated and moved into the old Lillard house, which is where her and her friends used to go to hide out – and side from taking away their secret place, they bring with the camera crews and a few weird ass family members that will shake things up even more.
My only concerns with the book was that the beginning seemed a bit long, a lot of set up for the plot which focuses around figuring out why Candace is how she is and what that means for her and the town. The beginning isn’t bad, or boring by any means, but when I hit the point where the plot really takes off it was like a jolt flew through me and I realized this was what I was waiting for.
I can’t wait to see what’s next from Sticks and Natalie C. Parker. Someone pass me the Moonshine while I wait….