The Replacement by Brenna Yovanoff

Summary/Cover Image from Publisher's Website:

Mackie Doyle is not one of us. Though he lives in the small town of Gentry, he comes from a world of tunnels and black murky water, a world of living dead girls ruled by a little tattooed princess. He is a Replacement—left in the crib of a human baby sixteen years ago. Now, because of fatal allergies to iron, blood, and consecrated ground, Mackie is fighting to survive in the human world.

Mackie would give anything to live among us, to practice on his bass or spend time with his crush, Tate. But when Tate's baby sister goes missing, Mackie is drawn irrevocably into the underworld of Gentry, known as Mayhem. He must face the dark creatures of the Slag Heaps and find his rightful place, in our world, or theirs.

Edward Scissorhands meets The Catcher in the Rye in this wildly imaginative and frighteningly beautiful horror novel about an unusual boy and his search for a place to belong.

The Replacement is yet another one of those books I've been looking forward to reading for a long time, and when the chance came for me to finally read it, I was nothing short of excited. Sadly enough, while The Replacement is certainly one of the most creative books I've read this year and extremely well written at that, I have mixed feelings about it for a few different reasons. Though, before we get to that, let me tell you a little about it.

The Replacement tells the story of Mackie Doyle. Even though, Mackie and everyone hates to admit it, he is a bit different from the average human for a few different reasons. For one, whenever he's around metal products he gets ill, and for two, he's a replacement, switched with a human baby- the real Mackie Doyle- sixteen year prior. All of his life, Mackie's been told to stay under the radar, to not draw attention to himself, because if he causes the wrong kind of stir, he may end up dead as a doornail. That all changes the day Tate comes into the picture. Tate is fierce and sarcastic but extremely lost because of the fact her baby sister went missing. Mackie has a feeling of where Tate's sister is, but is he willing to go back to were he came from to find her? Only time and more pages will tell in this imaginative and well-spun tale of how far one boy will go to save the day.

The premise of this is awesome...imaginative, creative, it had me hooked ever since I first heard about it. Though, while the execution was good, it wasn't nearly as fantastic and nail-biting as I expected. I mean, I did love the idea of replacements and the world and people under Gentry for reasons listed above (imaginative, creative, etc.) and I especially loved learning more about them, but at times I felt Brenna never dug dip enough into their world to give the reader a truly clear picture of everything. Specifically, I never really got what the creatures under ground where supposed to be...angels, demons, zombie like people...it just was never really that clear. And while this may seem like a little thing, it bugged me at times.

Moving on, I liked the characters. Mackie was interesting and fearless, one of my favorites in the story to be honest. I especially loved how Brenna used his "suppernatural" side as a way to have him learn that even if you may feel like the biggest outsider ever, you're really not if you look deeper into your life. I also liked his friendship with Roswell and relationship with Tate, but I personally would have loved (LOVED!) more development into each. With Tate and Mackie, in particular, because I sometimes felt like the romantic side of their relationship came out of no where.

And last but not least, Brenna Youvanoff's writing. I really enjoyed it. I thought she did a great job establishing the characters and plot even with the slight flaws it had. I also enjoyed how her writing made some scenes of this even better.

In all, while The Replacement and me clashed about a few different things, I still do suggest it to paranormal lovers out there, as well as people looking for a book with an enticing premise. Lastly, I will definitely be reading more by Yovanoff even though I didn't absolutely love this novel.

Grade: B

The Replacement is now out! To read an excerpt click here.

Book Trailer:

Source: Unsolicited review copy from Penguin Teen. Thanks!


  1. I already have this in my TBR pile1
    It looks fantastic!!
    The whole inspiration behind it, I mean wow!!!

    Thanks for the review!


  2. Great review. I'm glad you liked it pretty well. I bought this book recently and am looking forward to reading it. It seems like a lot of paranormal books I've read lately haven't gone into the fantasy world with enough depth. It's the opposite of the problem most books have - they spend so much time talking about background, that the book gets bogged down.

  3. Most people I've seen review this one have had mixed reviews..I may hunt this one down at a library or used store, so I can weigh in.

  4. I am for sure going to buy a copy of this book. It sounds just too good and paranormal stories are my favourites. :) Great review!

  5. I too have been wanting to get my hands on this book, but I don't find that many reviews add to the hype. Thanks for the review :)

  6. I really want to read this! Great review :)

  7. I've noticed this one has gotten a lot of mixed reviews.

    I'm still going to read it. I can't resist that cover. (I'm such a cover-judger...it's a sickness)

    Thanks for your honest review! Much appreciated!


  8. I really loved this one, but I'm with you that I wanted to know what those creatures were! Little things like that bug me.

    Love your blog, I'm a new follower :)

  9. I've been interested in this one for awhile. Thanks for sharing your thoughts! I know what you mean about enjoying an author's writing even if you weren't head over heels for one book in particular. Glad you enjoyed certain aspects!


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