The Forgotten Ones by Laura Howard Review

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Title: The Forgotten Ones
Author: Laura Howard (Twitter)
Publisher: Self-Published
Publish Date: April 28, 2013
Genre: NA, Paranormal
Pages: 197
Source: Author

Allison O'Malley's plan is to go to grad school so she can get a good job and take care of her schizophrenic mother. She has carefully closed herself off from everything else, including a relationship with Ethan, who she's been in love with for as long as she can remember.

What is definitely not part of the plan is the return of her long-lost father, who claims he can bring Allison's mother back from the dark place her mind has gone. Allison doesn't trust her father, so why would she believe his stories about a long forgotten Irish people, the Tuatha de Danaan? But truths have a way of revealing themselves. Secrets will eventually surface. And Allison must learn to set aside her plan and work with her father if there is even a small chance it could restore her mother's sanity.
As most of you know, I've avoided the new adult genre like the plague, simply for the innate fear that it will become host to a bevy of novels that are trite, cliche and altogether meaningless. I am, however, a sucker for a gorgeous cover and a unique premise, so I was instantly sold on the premise of The Forgotten Ones by Laura Howard. The author presents readers with a rich and imaginative world, all the while grounding us in reality with characters readers will relate to and situations that feel all too real at times.

It must be said though, that I was expecting much more new adult content from The Forgotten Ones. With Alison being 21 and Ethan being 23, it's completely acceptable to class the novel as such based on that alone. However, I found that the budding romance had a much more YA feel to it, as it was sweet and, if I'm entirely honest, innocent. The beauty of NA is that readers can expect more sexual tension without blurring the lines of age-appropriate material. It felt as though The Forgotten Ones teetered somewhere along the middle of these genres though, blurring the lines.

Ms. Howard gives readers a completely exciting paranormal premise in which we follow Allison to Tir Na Nog, uncovering the truth behind the myths of the fairies, and the truth behind Allison's own nature, as well. The story is rich and intriguing, and we're offered careful subtle glimpses into an amazing magical realm complete with spells, paranormal creatures and a backstory that is, for all intents and purposes, to die for. 

The main problem that I had with The Forgotten Ones was simply that it was so short. Had we been offered another hundred pages or so, we might be able to fully envelop ourselves in the world. As it is though, The Forgotten Ones teases us with tempting details, but it never fully absorbs us into its magical escapism. I also felt that, at times, the novel warred between a contemporary romance and a paranormal tale. Both elements were prominent and strong, but I think the emphasis on romance might have taken away from the actual paranormal offering in the end. 

Overall though, I'm intrigued by the premise of The Forgotten Ones. The pronunciation of a multitude of names was tricky to grapple with at times, but it didn't really detract from my enjoyment. It's a solid series opener, and I'll definitely be looking to see if the series improves as it progresses. I give it a 3.5 out of 5, and I recommend it to all fans of both NA and YA, especially those who enjoy romance and paranormal.

I received this book free of charge from the author in exchange for an honest review. This, in no way, affected my opinion or review of this book.


  1. I've heard some good things about this book, but from your review I don't think it would be for me. It sounds like the world could have been more developed and the plot more stretched out. I agree with you on romances in NA. You expect them to be full of sexual tension, so it's a little disappointing that this one didn't have that factor.
    Still, I'm glad that you enjoyed it overall, Melissa!
    Lovely review! :)

  2. Thanks for such a great review Melissa! I've followed your blog for a couple years, so it's exciting to be featured here!!

  3. Whoa, only 197 pages? That is really short and would make it hard to settle into the world and the characters before we're suddenly at the last page. I think I might pass on this one for the moment event though there are some things about it that intrigue me, I'm just still on the hunt for a book that's going to blow me away. I'm curious to see what you'll think of the series moving forward though, sometimes series that start out a bit rocky end up being my favorites:)

  4. This sounds like a book that has a lot of potential had it been more thoroughly presented. But the prmise indeed sounds good and I have to admit the cover captivated as well. I might give this book a try someday. Thanks for the lovely review, Melissa. ;)

  5. I have this one on my Kindle. I didn't realize it was so short. I don't like when that happens. I like my books with some meat on their bones. Regardless, I'm intrigued by the story line and will eventually read it. Plus, you're totally right about the cover. I'm a sucker for a pretty cover.

  6. Wowww, that might be a little too short for a full-fledged story for me. I think I might be disappointed that plot threads are solved too quickly and not explored to their full depth and, lately, novels with potential seem to be falling flat as they don't rise to that full potential. I'm glad to see you enjoyed this, though, and you've piqued my curiosity. Wonderful review, Melissa!(:

  7. Interesting, I haven't given The Forgotten Ones that much thought but good to know that it has that hint of paranormal in there. But yeah, the shortness of it would probably frustrate me. Great review Mel!

    Jeann @ Happy Indulgence

  8. I'm not particularly fond of fey, so I don't think I'll be reading this one. But like you, I think that it's a lovely cover! It does sound like a pretty decent paranormal story, and I'm actually pleased that it's got older characters in it. That makes for an interesting twist indeed!


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