Friday, April 2, 2021

Hollowpox: The Hunt for Morrigan Crow (Nevermoor, #3)
by Jessica Townsend

Synopsis (via Goodreads): Morrigan Crow and her friends have survived their first year as proud scholars of the elite Wundrous Society, helped bring down the nefarious Ghastly Market, and proven themselves loyal to Unit 919. Now Morrigan faces a new, exciting challenge: to master the mysterious Wretched Arts, and control the power that threatens to consume her.

But a strange and frightening illness has taken hold of Nevermoor, turning infected Wunimals into mindless, vicious Unnimals on the hunt. As victims of the Hollowpox multiply, panic spreads. And with the city she loves in a state of fear, Morrigan quickly realizes it's up to her to find a cure for the Hollowpox, even if it will put her - and everyone in Nevermoor - in more danger than she ever imagined.

Illustrations by Jim Madsen 


I received an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. My thoughts and opinions are my own. Any quotes I use are from an unpublished copy and may not reflect the finished product.

I don't know why I thought this was going to be a trilogy, but Townsend clearly has more in store for Morrigan and her found family (which is something I am totally here for). It's clear everyone at the Deucalion loves Morrigan, and she's embraced them as her family as well. Even the hotel itself seems to have a fondness for the Wundersmith. Jupiter and Fen are the best pseudo-parents a girl could ask for, and I absolutely love seeing the two of them fight for Morrigan. They usually agree on what needs to happen, but their preferred methods can be vastly different (Fen favors claws and teeth, while Jupiter is fond of words). Moreover, it's not just that they're willing to physically and verbally brawl with others on her behalf, but they actually listen when she speaks. They respect her voice and her decisions (even when they don't agree), and it's oh-so-refreshing to read about adults that value a child's thoughts and feelings.

My son and I have been reading this series together, which I both love and hate in equal measure. I absolutely love reading these books with my son, but loathe having to wait until we can read them together. We typically read chapter books before bed at night, and he's usually asleep after a single chapter. Hollowpox has 548 pages, so only reading one chapter at night... Well, we started this book back in December, haha. It took us three months to read this book in its entirety, something I could have easily read on my own in a matter of days. However, my son made me promise I wouldn't read it without him, so here we are. Do you know how much self control it takes to stop reading? Especially when the story really gets going? It's torture! Alas, I do love sharing the experience with my son, so I guess it all evens out in the end.

Townsend has created some really remarkable secondary characters that I love to read about. Everyone in Unit 919 - including Ms. Cheery - are all wonderfully well-written and fleshed out. The people living and working at the Deucalion are also incredible characters that I enjoy seeing on the pages. There is just so much to love about the people in this book, and I've even started liking the "villain" of the story. I have a feeling there's something we don't know about them, so I'm looking forward to getting more of their backstory. Their presence has been somewhat limited in the previous books, but it's always there hovering in the background - a looming thundercloud just waiting to strike. Squall - the aforementioned villain - is a complex character that doesn't waste an opportunity. He's manipulative and cruel, yet there's something about him that I can't quite put my finger on. Like his interest in Morrigan, for example. Why does he want to train her to be the one thing that could potentially get in his way? After seeing him in several Ghostly Hours - watching the enthusiasm of the child he used to be - it's hard to hate him with the same intensity. 

Seriously though... we all need people like Jupiter and Fen in our lives! 

One of my favorite parts of this book was the Gobleian Library, so I really hope we get to revisit it in future books. Just think of the adventures they could have in there! I was also fascinated by the long-forgotten (and super mysterious) School of Wundrous Arts and its Scholar Mistress. Rook appears seemingly out of nowhere, and her existence isn't common knowledge, which is also true for the school on Sub-nine. There are only a handful of people that know it's there, yet the history it contains... amazing. I hope Morrigan takes the rest of Unit 919 with her to Sub-nine in the next book. I think they're mischievous enough to unlock it's secrets and find all of its hidden nooks and crannies. They may not have the access Morrigan does, but they work well together as a group.

I don't want to say too much and spoil something that happens in previous books, so I'll just say this: you need this series in your life! It's one of my favorites, and my seven-year-old is equally obsessed. Townsend has written something that both children and adults can relate to, and the stories themselves are unique and super creative. I really love diving into these books, and I cannot wait to see what exciting adventures Morrigan will go on next. (★★★★★)

4 comments:

  1. I'm not much of an MG reader, but I can sometimes indulge. In fact, I'm reading Keeper of the Lost Cities series right now. I might try this one on for size in the future. :)

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  2. This sounds so fun. I love that there's an outbreak of something affecting the animals and now they have something to focus on and work towards. I like medical stuff in books. Even magical medical stuff. lol

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  3. I love that you were able share this experience with your son.

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  4. We have the first two books for this series sitting unread on the shelf *hangs head in shame*
    Need to get reading as it sounds so wonderful!

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“Stuff and nonsense. Nonsense and stuff and much of a muchness and nonsense all over again. We are all mad here, don't you know?”
― Marissa Meyer, Heartless