Release Date ~ September 25, 1990
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Review copy received from Thomas Allen & Son Ltd.
Katie is on the verge of her Rumspringa, the time in Amish life when teenagers can get a taste of the real world. But the real world comes to her in this dystopian tale with a philosophical bent. Rumors of massive unrest on the “Outside” abound. Something murderous is out there. Amish elders make a rule: No one goes outside, and no outsiders come in. But when Katie finds a gravely injured young man, she can’t leave him to die. She smuggles him into her family’s barn—at what cost to her community? The suspense of this vividly told, truly horrific thriller will keep the pages turning.
I had heard some amazing things about The Hallowed Ones - so one day, while in the mood for something deliciously creepy, I picked it up expecting the best. And fortunately, it had such a strong start that drew in right away.
Unfortunately, it never really picked up for me after that. I felt like I spent the remainder of the book waiting for "it" to happen (I'm not really sure what "it" was, but I was hoping for something truly exciting and captivating) but it just never arrived for me.
- Brilliant plot concept:
The idea behind this story is like blow-your-mind amazing. An Amish setting? In an apocolyptic world (this is great because Katie's Amish community is so isolated that you have no idea what's going on with the Outside world- INCREDIBLY MYSTERIOUS, love it!) with some freaky killer thing(s) running around? I'm not sure it can get much scarier than that.
And then Katie seems to spend most of her time trying to figure out where she stands in her faith and her love life. There's nothing wrong with that, but it didn't jive very well with the direction the book initially seemed to be headed in. The role of faith was interesting, and for the most part it fit very well until eventually it just felt like we were beating a dead horse.
Plus I really couldn't care for her love life - at all. I sympathized with Katie for a while, because she was in such a tricky spot but after a while it just seemed ridiculous. And I couldn't bring myself to care when I didn't understand why she was acting out that way.
But really, I was hoping for more scares. It felt too much like there was a trade-off part way through the book: exchange scary scenes for kissing/doubting ones. So I believe the ultimate problem for me was that my expectations were for something entirely different, and I was disappointed by that.