Published by Entangled Publishing on September 5, 2017
Genres: Paranormal, Romantic, YA Paranormal Romance, Young Adult
Sexual Content: Kissing
Reviewed by: Kate
A simple but forgotten truth: Where harbingers of death appear, the morgues will soon be full.
Angie Dovage can tell there’s more to Reece Fernandez than just the tall, brooding athlete who has her classmates swooning, but she can’t imagine his presence signals a tragedy that will devastate her small town. When something supernatural tries to attack her, Angie is thrown into a battle between good and evil she never saw coming. Right in the center of it is Reece—and he’s not human.
What’s more, she knows something most don’t. That the secrets her town holds could kill them all. But that’s only half as dangerous as falling in love with a harbinger of death.
BLACK BIRD OF THE GALLOWS fits in a lot of YA paranormal romance cliches while somehow also managing to be very unique and totally creepy. The creative mythology really gives a lot of oomph to what could be a very flat and boring YA paranormal romance.
Reece is your typical mysterious, swoon-y, hero. You know the type - your Twilight-esque "I'm so dangerous, stay away from me, I can't tell you my secrets" hero who, despite having been alive and maintaining a distance from other humans for hundreds of years manages to fall for the girl in a hot second after meeting her. Angie diverges from the passive heroine mold though, and has great friendships and hobbies outside of falling for the guy next door, so that is refreshing. Her past and her music both help make her a very three-dimensional character who offers a lot to the story, not just a simpering heroine who follows the hero around (though she does a little of that).
The mythology of the story, with the harbringers and the beekeepers is fascinating and also super creepy. I wish there had been a little more about the history, but what we did get was enough to make the story make sense and give me enough of a scare that I didn't like reading this one alone at night.
All in all, BLACK BIRD OF THE GALLOWS was an interesting addition to the young adult paranormal romance genre. I especially liked that the book was a stand-alone and tied up the loose ends - none of this cliffhanger stuff that has become so common. Definitely recommend if you're looking for something a little creepy but still romantic.Series Titles:
- For another unique young adult paranormal romance, try THE EDGE OF EVERYTHING by Jeff Giles.