Genres: YA Paranormal, Dark Fantasy, Young Adult | Release Date: 5 October 2023 | Standalone | Pages: 309 | Publisher: Brigids Gate Press | Review
A huge thank you goes to Catherine McCarthy, for letting me read an ARC of The Wolf and the Favour! This YA paranormal tale is a refreshing and heart-warming story about finding acceptance and courage in the least likely of places. But as I don’t want to spoil anything, let’s give you an overview before I talk about everything I love about this fantasy!
Hannah is a ten year old girl, curious about the world around her even as she navigates the complexities of Down syndrome in a school environment. When her father moves them to a new area, Hannah’s drawn to the lane beside their new home… But something ominous lurks within the woods, and Hannah doesn’t know whom to trust. Is the tree creature a friend, even though there’s a disturbing aura about her? Can Hannah trust a blue-eyed wolf, who comes to tell her she mustn’t ever enter the woods? And what secret is a neighbouring old farmer keeping from everyone?
The Wolf and the Favour is an absolute gem of the YA paranormal fantasy genre. Catherine has deftly twined normal issues such as going to a new school and embracing how unique every child is, with the paranormal of a deadly creature in the woods. For all that this could be the perfect spooky read on a winter’s night, it’s also like being wrapped in a warm hug… Because the love emanating between Hannah and her father positively leaps off the page! How could that not be a happiness boost?
This exquisite tale has hints of that special something which resonates from C. S. Lewis’ The Chronicles of Narnia and Kate Forsyth’s The Puzzle Ring. Is it the courage of Hannah? Or perhaps it’s because of the protective ‘other’, who is determined to save an innocent life against malevolent forces? Whatever the reason, I’m absolutely charmed by the story within The Wolf and the Favour.
This beautiful YA paranormal fantasy is a wonderful coming of age story, highlighting how change can be scary even as it leads to better things. And in an ever changing world, this perspective on how to navigate uncertainty with courage and love is *such* a gift. I admire Hannah so much, because I’m sure at ten years old I wouldn’t have been anywhere near as brave!
Although The Wolf and the Favour starts off a little slow, paranormal-wise, I *promise* if you stick with it you’re in for a treat!
The Wolf and the Favour by Catherine McCarthy is a YA paranormal fantasy of courage, deadly creatures and a powerful magic. I adore this book so much, and highly recommend you read it if you want an escape into a rather spooky world of folklore and peril! If you’ve enjoyed what you’ve read here, make sure you grab yourself a copy of The Wolf and the Favour via any of the links below. Happy reading, glitterbugs!
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