The Replacement by Brenna Yovanoff
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
In the town of Gentry, strange things are known to happen. Creepy things like babies that are switched for scary, sick and dying creatures. Like unexplainable things happen over night that have no explanations at all, or people who just don’t fit in wandering the streets. But the townsfolk look the other way, after all they are a prosperous town, a town that was never even hit by the depression. They are blessed.
Mackey was one of those strange creatures swapped out for a normal baby, one of the very few who actually survive the exchange. He and his family know exactly what he is, his friends and classmates just know that he’s different. Mackey gets by day by day, but some things are changing within him, and just living is getting harder. Next thing he knows he is approached by Tate, a classmate who suspects who or what he is, and begins asking for answers regarding the recent death of her baby sister. The more he gets to know Tate and gets wrapped up in her sister’s story – the more involved he gets with the “other” members of the town of Gentry, and can no longer just sit back and pretend like nothing is going on.
I think I made a mistake by listening to this book via audio book instead of reading it. The language of this book was very dark and meloncholy. It paints a very gray, damp picture. Mackey, who is the narrator, is very depressed in his speech even. All of this combined with chapter upon chapter of him just figuring out about his kind and why he is the way that he is – made the book seem to drag on on the beginning. It wasn’t until Mackey really decides to help Tate that I really started getting interested in the book. I felt like the book was finally starting to go somewhere definite.
Mackey had several very well established relationships that sort of solidified him. I do think this was a very active and very important aspect of the book. Without these relationships he would not have been able to survive, but it takes Mackey a long time to really understand and appreciate this. This particular aspect of the story was my favorite moving line – because to me it helped move him from less of a creature and into more of a person, mostly because he himself felt the same way.
I really did like the language of the story. I love it when a book is able to paint a picture, and leave an impression. I liked the dark feel to the book. Like I said, I think my mistake was in listening to the book rather than reading it. Some books just aren’t good audio books, and it has nothing to do with the author or the narrator, but just the book itself.