The White Forest: A Novel by Adam McOmber

The White Forest: A Novel

byAdam McOmber

Kobo ebook | September 11, 2012

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In this hauntingly original debut novel about a young woman whose peculiar abilities help her infiltrate a mysterious secret society, Adam McOmber uses fantastical twists and dark turns to create a fast-paced, unforgettable story.

Young Jane Silverlake lives with her father in a crumbling family estate on the edge of Hampstead Heath. Jane has a secret—an unexplainable gift that allows her to see the souls of man-made objects—and this talent isolates her from the outside world. Her greatest joy is wandering the wild heath with her neighbors, Madeline and Nathan. But as the friends come of age, their idyll is shattered by the feelings both girls develop for Nathan, and by Nathan’s interest in a cult led by Ariston Day, a charismatic mystic popular with London’s elite. Day encourages his followers to explore dream manipulation with the goal of discovering a strange hidden world, a place he calls the Empyrean.

A year later, Nathan has vanished, and the famed Inspector Vidocq arrives in London to untangle the events that led up to Nathan’s disappearance. As a sinister truth emerges, Jane realizes she must discover the origins of her talent, and use it to find Nathan herself, before it’s too late.

Title:The White Forest: A NovelFormat:Kobo ebookPublished:September 11, 2012Publisher:TouchstoneLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1451664273

ISBN - 13:9781451664270

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Rated 3 out of 5 by from Okay I liked the basic ideas of the story but it was a slow start and I almost stopped reading a third of the way through. I was more interested in finding Nathan than in Jane's abilities, which was supposed to be the main focus.
Date published: 2017-06-16
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Poor Planning with Overexagerated Writing I wish this book was well written because I may have enjoyed it more. The story could've been interesting enough, when it wasn't confusing and annoying, and the setting was well established in the very beginning, but there was way too much information released at once and it only got worse from there. I found myself ignoring a lot of what I was told about the Empyrean and everything else because there was too much to keep track of, and too many names were introduced too soon - I often forgot the main character's name often, too. The writing was ridiculous. It was way too floral, and the tone of that period felt so forced that I wondered if it was exaggerated on purpose or if it was even researched at all. Jane also focused on her uniqueness way too much, and her descriptions of reality were annoying. The average young woman at that time wouldn't act the same way as she and Maddy did; I could understand some actions if the plot asked for it and if the characters felt that they were the types who would, but for those two it was just irrational. I first thought that this was written by a woman and that Jane was her Mary Sue character - I though that the floral writing was meant to be beautiful despite how badly it failed. Instead, I saw that it was written by a man and I was put off from the story because it showed that he didn't have a firm grasp on what a female character would act like nor did he have a strong idea of Jane's character to explain her divergence from the norm (her social awkwardness was not reason enough). The book was too progressive at times, making no sense for that period. If the author though that having Maddy pretend to act that way about Pascal and Alexander's relationship was enough, it wasn't; it definitely didn't feel right when the young woman joked about making hasty love with Jane in response to another's retort. The same goes for them making fun of religion at the prophecy machine, making it feel like the author didn't want to bother with authenticity too much which in turn begs the question about putting the story into Victorian times at all - this could've been its own fantasy setting. At least the story was interesting at times, but I didn't care for the plot much; what happened to Nathan was last on my mind, and I had no desire to see any of their goals realized. I also didn't like how the violence came over Jane so quickly - it felt as though it came out of nowhere since she didn't seem like that kind of person leading up to those points in the story. Her memory sequences were annoying, too - nothing was revealed properly because I was always wondering when this memory took place and how soon before or after certain times they occurred. Jane's memory of Nathan and Maddy having sex in the forest, for example, should've been foreshadowed - even if it was just a slight mention here and there. It felt like it came out of nowhere, and it would've helped with some plot points had I know this information sooner. Because it felt forced, it didn't feel like it was well plotted out at all and that again pushed me out of the story. Jane's arrogant attitude at the end wasn't very well done, either. For someone so shy and reserved, she shouldn't have switched attitudes so quickly. The arrogance got worse when she discovered her true identify, and when pairing that with the sudden violence I felt certain that the character wasn't pinned down properly when she was first created. If this book were planned better, with everything being revealed perfectly, I may have enjoyed it more. But the ridiculous writing, the underdeveloped characters, the hard to follow world building, and the boring stuff in between made this book a "one read only" for me. It could've been better with the fantasy involved, but too much fell flat and I ended up disappointed really quickly regardless of how the story brought me in with the setting in the beginning. In the end, all I wanted to know was what was going to happen with Pascal and Alexander, and I still didn't get any satisfaction. #plumreview
Date published: 2016-11-18
Rated 3 out of 5 by from I'm not sure the world created here is as stange and mysterious was intended but the heroine is interesting and I enjoyed the transformation of her character. - See more at:
Date published: 2013-09-28