Thursday, July 7, 2011

Switched by Amanda Hocking

Switched by Amanda Hocking
2010; CreateSpace - Soon to be St. Martin's Press


Summary

When Wendy Everly was six-years-old, her mother was convinced she was a monster and tried to kill her. It isn't until eleven years later that Wendy finds out her mother might've been telling the truth. With the help of Finn Holmes, Wendy finds herself in a world she never knew existed - and it's one she's not sure if she wants to be a part of. (courtesy of Goodreads)

Review

Amanda Hocking is who every self-published author aspires to be - incredibly successful and soon to be published. I downloaded the first book for the Trylle Trilogy after reading about her publishing deal in the New York Times.

Switched was a delightful book. Wendy has never fit in. Life began badly with her mother trying to kill her on her sixth birthday. Since then the only people she trusts are her older brother and aunt. Enter Finn, a mysterious boy who steals her away from her family and introduces her to her "true family." Wendy is a changeling - a troll changeling, not a fairy as most stories use changelings. What's more, she's a princess. Wendy now has to deal with a less than motherly mother, an entire new world and culture, and people out to kill her. She's definitely thrown into the troll deep end.

I've read a lot of mixed reviews about this book. If you're looking to be critical, you can find lots of things to take issue with. There are areas where the plot isn't well developed or where things are skipped over altogether. Some of the characters are irritating. But if you don't think too much while you're reading, it's thoroughly enjoyable. It is definitely better written and plotted than most (but not all) self-published novels I've read. Switched was easy to read and the prose flowed smoothly most of the time. I was consistently interested in the book and loved learning about the troll world.

Wendy is an interesting girl. I really admired her gumption. She's spent her entire life with her hackles up. That doesn't change when she is introduced to the troll world. She refuses to abide by tradition and stands up to her elders. She's loyal to her brother and aunt and sticks up for the downtrodden. A courageous, take-charge girl.

Finn is also a great guy. I like how he goes back and forth between following his duty as a tracker/guard and his interest in Wendy. He's a good guide for Wendy. You can obviously tells that he respects her even if he disagrees. And he's the strong, silent type that is always so intriguing. I liked a lot of the other troll characters. Queen Elora, Wendy's biological mother, seems awful, but there are hints of depth. I'm interested to see how she develops. Tove and Rhys also seem like sweet, intriguing guys.

Switched is a fun book. It may not veer too far from standard YA paranormal plot arcs, but there's a reason those themes are so successful. I enjoyed it from start to end and look forward to reading more.

Rating: 3.5 / 5

20 comments :

  1. I love the premise of this one. It's always great when you find an excellent self published book :)

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  2. I am intrigued by this author and would definitely read this book.

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  3. Interesting, something quite unique. Great review!

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  4. I like the sound of this book. I heard of it before, but it never got my fullest attention. Now it has! Great review.

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  5. I've been interested in checking these books out ever since I heard about Hocking's big publishing deal. I'm not sure if this one will be for me, but she has a new series releasing next year (I think) that I really like the sound of.

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  6. Hahah Dont I know it!!!

    Clare is killing me with these teasers. It's like she lives to toucher her fan-base.

    Great review btw.

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  7. Kind of sounds a little bit like how Personal Demons read for me. If you wanted to tear that one apart you definitely could, but if you went into it just looking to have a bit of fun, then it was highly entertaining:) Sometimes I like books like that, I might have to try this one! Thanks Alison:)

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  8. I have not read this series yet but I need to. I have heard very good things about it. I didn't know she got pick up to be published! That's great! Thanks for the review!

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  9. Hmm, I want to read this one now, as it's pretty cheap on Kindle. It sounds like a great fun read for when you're at the end of your book budget. Great review!

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  10. I actually bought this a while ago, and it's faithfully sitting on Nook waiting for me. So good to see your review! I tend to go a little easier on self-published authors or ones from small houses in terms of being nitpciky, simply because they have one, maybe two people to do the work that a book at huge house would have a team for, so I get what you are saying. I had the same experience with The Other Side of Life. Thanks for the great review - I'll move this one up my TBR list once I get through my physical books. -Linds

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  11. I've been curious about, well, all of Hocking's work. It has made such buzz and I have bought a few of the books, but I haven't gotten around to reading them.

    Glad to hear you found it delightful. It may not stray too much but for people like me who haven't read many books involving trolls, I think it sounds very unique.

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  12. Thank you for this balanced review. I've been really curious about these books, but I never really knew what to make of them. I feel like i have a much better handle on what to expect in both quality and story now.

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  13. I admit to avoiding self-published books because my general assumption is just that they could never be as good. I don't really feel proud of myself for believing in that. But it's inspiring to know that she got a publishing deal after all! I can often be too critical about books so it's good to have your warning of not to think too much about this one for if I do read it. Thanks for the review!

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  14. Like you I've been curious about this book and have read mixed reviews. I think you're point about how you approach this series is an important one. I tend to go lenient on self-published books if I find myself enjoying it. I think I might wait on this book/series once my tbr pile goes down. Thanks for well written review!

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  15. I've read and reviewed this title as well. I really liked it because of Rhys and a few other characters. I think it does a good job of being realistic and incorporating the supernatural. I can't wait to read the rest of the trilogy.

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  16. I downloaded a sample to my Nook last week. I really enjoyed My Blood Approves and I hear very highly of the Switched series. Great review!

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  17. I just finished this book. Im giving it a four though, because im comparing it to her other book "My Blood Approves" that i also just finished.

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  18. I haven't heard of this one before. I think i'm going to have to check it out. Great post!

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  19. Thanks for the follow even though we disagree about Twilight. ;-)

    I have to read this one--I read Amanda Hocking's Hollowland and loved it! I can't wait for the next in the series. :)

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  20. I loved the idea of this book and I wanted to love it- and I did enjoy the story but the characters where just so annoying. I wanted to yell at them. Wendy's brother was my favourite character, he was such a sweetheart :)

    Blethering About Books

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