Book Review: Hemlock by Kathleen Peacock

Hemlock by Kathleen Peacock

Published May 8,2012

Summary: In this slightly more believable version of supernatural YA, lupine syndrome (otherwise known as becoming a werewolf) is running rampant across the United States. Those infected are sent to containment camps where they live out their lives never able to see their families again. The novel opens after Mackenzie’s best friend Amy has been killed by a rogue werewolf. The whole city of Hemlock is on high alert looking for the beast. Mackenzie has seen the evil containment can do and has mixed feelings about the civilian group who has come to look for the killer. Rather than showing “the daily life of a supernatural being” as all too many YA books do, Hemlock draws connections to what situations in the real world mimic the containment of lupine syndrome.

Bechdel Test?: Though Mackenzie spends most of the novel trying to choose between two guys, she does have conversations with her friends about political issues such as the containment camps and the politics of killing semi-human beings.

Rating: 4/5

I truly enjoyed this book for its wonderful portrayal of how a single factor can make society think a person is evil. To me, this spoke to the HIV/AIDS scare in the 90s, the round-ups during WWII and many others. I like YA novels that bring these issues up in an accessible way to introduce readers to complex issues.

2 responses to “Book Review: Hemlock by Kathleen Peacock”

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