Title: The Forgotten Ones
Author: Laura Howard
Release Date: April 30, 2012
Source: Author for blog tour
Series? Danaan Trilogy #1
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary, Fantasy
Page Count: 177
Rating: [3/5 stars]
Allison O’Malley’s plan is to go to grad school so she can get a good job and take care of her schizophrenic mother. She has carefully closed herself off from everything else, including a relationship with Ethan, who she’s been in love with for as long as she can remember.
What is definitely not part of the plan is the return of her long-lost father, who claims he can bring Allison’s mother back from the dark place her mind has gone. Allison doesn’t trust her father, so why would she believe his stories about a long forgotten Irish people, the Tuatha de Danaan? But truths have a way of revealing themselves. Secrets will eventually surface. And Allison must learn to set aside her plan and work with her father if there is even a small chance it could restore her mother’s sanity. (summary from goodreads)
THE FORGOTTEN ONES is an interesting blend of contemporary and fantasy. Main character Allison is twenty-one, which places the book in the new adult age range, but it reads sort of like a young adult book, so I’d recommend for fans of either or both. She has some experiences of young adult characters, like dancing around a guy she likes, but also experiences of adults, with her desire to take care of her mother on her own.
I liked Allison. She’s responsible and smart, and doesn’t let a cute guy sway her from her intended goals. Allison’s mother has schizophrenia, and she blames herself for her mother’s disorder, because it developed after she was born. Her mother’s parents have always taken care of Allison and her mother, but now that she’s an adult, Allison feels it’s time for her to step up.
The first half of THE FORGOTTEN ONES is contemporary. There’s a hint of the fantasy world to come, because Allison has strange dreams, but otherwise, she lives a pretty normal life. It’s only when her long lost father shows up that she learns the truth about him: he’s a Danaan, an Irish fairy. Allison rightfully resents her father for leaving her mother pregnant and alone, so she’s not happy that he claims he’s the only one that can fix her mom.
When Allison enters Tír na n’Óg, aka Irish fairy stomping grounds, the fantasy part of THE FORGOTTEN ONES comes alive. I liked that the author turned to Irish mythology for inspiration. Allison quickly gets stuck in the middle of Danaan politics in an attempt to rescue her mother. She doesn’t know who she can trust, because Danaan are verrrry tricky. But she has an ally in Aodhan, a human who gradually turned Danaan after spending hundreds of years in Tír na n’Óg. I found Aodhan an interesting character because he’s a good example of what happens to humans when they spend too much time in Tír na n’Óg.
Allison does have a love interest, Ethan. She’s known Ethan since they were kids, and although they shared a pretty passionate kiss a few years ago, she doesn’t want to get anywhere near a relationship with him. As I said above, Allison doesn’t want to be detracted by a guy because supporting herself and her mother is more important to her. Inevitably, though, they head towards a relationship. Ethan’s a nice guy, but I wasn’t convinced of their attraction to each other.
THE FORGOTTEN ONES is a good start to a new series. It is a short read at only 177 pages. I would have liked to see a longer book because I think the story and characters could have been expanded upon. I had trouble keeping track of all the different Danaan because they were introduced in quick succession. I also thought the ending was somewhat abrupt. However, the author did intrigue me enough for me to want to find out what happens next to Allison.
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*giveaway is tour-wide.
About the author:
Laura Howard lives in New Hampshire with her husband and four children. Her obsession with books began at the age of 6 when she got her first library card. Nancy Drew, Sweet Valley High and other girly novels were routinely devoured in single sittings. Books took a backseat to diapers when she had her first child. It wasn’t until the release of a little novel called Twilight, 8 years later, that she rediscovered her love of fiction. Soon after, her own characters began to make themselves known. The Forgotten Ones is her first published novel.