Customer Reviews for

The Replacement

Average Rating 4
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(13)

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(8)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

12 out of 15 people found this review helpful.

Creepy, But Lovable Main Character

The entire town of Gentry knows that their human children are stolen and murdered by monsters, but they seem to be okay with the sacrifice in order to keep their town the happy place it is. This novel creates a intriguing world that is full of mystery.


Mackie Doyle...
The entire town of Gentry knows that their human children are stolen and murdered by monsters, but they seem to be okay with the sacrifice in order to keep their town the happy place it is. This novel creates a intriguing world that is full of mystery.


Mackie Doyle is one of the creepiest main characters I've come across in a while, but I will say he is very likable and he won me over very easily. Mackie has this venerability that makes you root for him even though he's not quite human and was placed in a crib to replace a human baby that had been stolen and sacrificed. While the creatures under the hill may be evil, Mackie isn't, and strives to just be "normal". Iron, even the slight amount in blood, causes Mackie to go into a toxic shock type syndrome, which adds to the struggle to live in the human world.


This novel is a great YA mystery. The kind where you have to figure out exactly what Mackie is why these creatures under the hill suddenly want him back.


If you like creepy YA told from a male first person point of view with a little bit of romance sprinkled in, this one's for you.

posted by Reading-Writing-Waiting on August 3, 2010

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Most Helpful Critical Review

5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

Interesting supernatural twist (from The Tealeaf Review)

Based on the synopsis on the back of the book, I went into The Replacement expecting a cool, almost reverse Labyrinth. But alas, there was no magical David Bowie, and no dance numbers. All I found was the same problem I've been having with a lot of paranormal books late...
Based on the synopsis on the back of the book, I went into The Replacement expecting a cool, almost reverse Labyrinth. But alas, there was no magical David Bowie, and no dance numbers. All I found was the same problem I've been having with a lot of paranormal books lately. I end up liking the world, and a lot of the secondary characters, more than the main plotline and characters. For me, the world that existed below the ground was beautiful, horrifying, and absolutely fascinating. I could picture the House of Mayhem, and the Morrigan, and the living dead girls in such vivid detail, I found myself sorry to return with Mackie to the normal human world. I wanted so much more of this mysterious world. The Morrigan especially! She was so cute and childlike, yet adult and sinister all at once. Her snuggly closeness quickly made her, without competition, my favorite character in the whole book. As for the human world? Well, it was just a whole village full of scared people in denial. Nothing really appealing about it. The best advice you can give your kid is to not be unique, but blend in. However, for everyone so seemingly steeped in denial, it struck me as really strange when some of the characters didn't bat an eyelash at some of the weird stuff going on. Little zombie girl? I'd freak. Doors popping out of garbage heaps? I'd run the other way. A freaky queen who likes to eat babies? I'd check myself into an institution. But no one seems to question the strangeness of it all. Maybe the teens in Gentry are immune to the denial? Or, at least a select few. One thing I really did appreciate, however, was the realism of the way the teens spoke. I liked that there was a bunch of swearing, because it felt so much more real that way. In a lot of YA, it seems the intent is to be a "clean" read - no cussing, no physical contact beyond kissing. Well, The Replacement got it right. The kids swear when they're mad or confused, and there's quite a bit of inappropriate touching and staring. Most books from a boy's perspective (especially those written by women) tend to skim over some details about where their minds are. But no, the author just flat out lets you know Mackie isn't really paying attention to the teacher, he's staring at some girl's boobs. I laughed. And it made me feel like the characters were a little more real. As for the characters themselves? The secondary cast stole the show to me, especially "Them", the underground folk. Mackie annoyed me occasionally - he came off a bit whiny, weak, and pathetic in some scenes. I really found myself just honestly wishing he'd grow a spine and do something. Tate was likable enough, though I felt no chemistry between her and Mackie. She felt like a convenient plot point. No interest in her until her sister vanishes, then suddenly, it's all about her. Something just didn't click with that relationship to me. Roswell was an awesome best friend, though his lack of asking questions and demanding answers about all the weird stuff going on was a little strange. I would have actually liked a little more detail about him and his family, though.
All in all, a pretty good supernatural read. The prose is elegant and haunting, and the world is beautifully creepy. I appreciate that this is a standalone novel, but I think I could have stood it to be a little longer. Some parts ended up feeling rushed. Mackie is a bit of a wimp, but a strong minor character cast make up for it.

posted by LizTea on March 15, 2011

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  • Posted October 18, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Unique

    I loved every word in this book. The story was magnificently creepy.

    8 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 1, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    extremely dark horror tale

    Sixteen years ago in Gentry, the tattooed princess sent Mackie Doyle as The Replacement who took the place in a crib of a newborn human baby. He is not the only Replacement in the town, but the locals are unaware of the switches and besides the changes has proven profitable for the ignorant but blissful townsfolk, other nearby places have collapsed. Mackie leaving Gentry to go to the underworld tunnels of Mayhem is dangerous for him but by staying he has allergies to iron and blood that can kill him. The girl he likes Alice donates blood and has silver pinned on her pierced tongue; he also cannot walk on sacred earth though his dad is a pastor with a church.

    However, the strange death of Natalie has shocked every one. Natalie's family attends the church of Mackie's dad though the lad does not know her or her older sister Tate who attends his school. The grieving girl obsesses over learning the truth about her sibling's death, which places Mackie in the awkward situation of choosing life above ground or below as he comes to know Tate.

    This is an extremely dark horror tale that grips the audience from the moment the teens are introduced and never slows down until the final confrontation. The Gentry high school students makes the story line seem plausible as most behave with reckless abandon with sex, drugs, cigarettes and alcohol prevalent; the teens challenge the adult authority. This is a strong novel that uses the Doppelganger Replacement as the premise of an exhilarating novel that warns readers to look beyond the glitter to insure there is no monster; like Tate is doing with no allies until Mackie joins her quest.

    Harriet Klausner

    7 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 14, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Refreshing changeling lore

    Malcolm (Mackie) knows he is not normal. In the small town of Gentry, he has to keep everyone else from knowing he is not normal too. His father is the local pastor, who tries his best to keep up appearances that nothing is wrong with the town. But things are about to get a lot more difficult to hide. Mackie's condition starts to worsen by the day, and he knows he will have to come to terms with the dark truths he's always known were there a lot sooner. Plus, a girl named Tate has been sniffing around, asking Mackie a lot of questions about her dead baby sister and who he really is. If Mackie hopes to save his town and get the girl, he is going to have to toughen up and go back to the ugly place he originally came from.

    I liked this book! Changeling stories are one of my favorites. It is both exciting and scary to think of babies being swapped for troublesome little creatures from another world! Mackie speaks and thinks wise beyond his years, a fact that made this book very enjoyable to read. I also really liked Tate. She was such a rough and tough girl, so assured of herself! Very refreshing and sexy! Mackie's older sister Emma was also a fresh character. A sister who loves and cares about her brother - imagine! And this review would not be complete without mentioning how awesome Mackie's friend Roswell is. We all should be so lucky as to have a friend like him. The changeling lore was fun and I liked that Brenna Yovanoff never actually named the other beasts. Honestly, I was expecting there to be a lot of loose ends, but all my questions were answered by the climax, and not in an overly rushed way. I am definitely looking forward to more from this author!

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 14, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Reviewed by Joan Stradling for TeensReadToo

    Mackie's hometown of Gentry isn't like other towns, but he's not like other kids, either. He's not even supposed to be alive. Mackie is a Replacement, left in place of a human baby. He was supposed to die, like all of the replacements do, but he didn't, though he may not live much longer. When the baby sister of a friend is taken, Mackie finds himself drawn into the world beneath the city, a place known as Mayhem . . . his place of origin. Mackie will have to decide where he really belongs and which side of the fight for Gentry he wants to join. His choice will determine his future - if he has one at all. Yovanoff weaves a deliciously dark tale of love, betrayal, and acceptance no matter who (or what) you are. I couldn't get enough of this book. Mackie, Emma, Tate, and all the other characters, both dark and human, made this book a thrill ride from start to finish. Eerily creepy and intensely enjoyable.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 23, 2013

    I Also Recommend:

    The Replacement is one weird, disturbing and beautiful novel. W

    The Replacement is one weird, disturbing and beautiful novel.

    When i heard about The Replacement and the plot, i was a little bit happy and creeped out at the same time. The whole replacing a baby with another baby that is not human is kinda psychologically disturbing. The world of The Replacement is described as grim yet enthralling. You can't help but feel counfused and understanding of the town of Gentry.

    The book was creepy yet enjoyable.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 2, 2013

    From what i read..

    I didnt get a chane to finish to finish this book.. but from what I read i loved it! This is so beautiful.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 10, 2012

    Original

    You either love or hate the characters. A very original story line. If you like zombies id give this book a chance. :)

    #review by a 17 year old girl

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 21, 2012

    Great book!

    I'm a very picky reader. I either love a book and finish reading it within 2 days or I hate it and don't bother finishing it. I read this book in 1.5 days. I couldn't put it down. Well written, great description of characters. Nice flow in the story line.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 8, 2012

    I Absoulty Love It

    Great Read. Recommend To All.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 5, 2012

    Loved it

    Dark.. but it was amazing

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 28, 2012

    Really good book

    This book was a great mix of odd and magical and it was fantastic

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 28, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    from missprint DOT wordpress DOT com

    Mackie Doyle doesn't remember any of the true, important parts. But his older sister Emma does. She remembers getting out of bed one night and looking into her brother's crib only to find something else inside. It tried to bite her but still she stayed watching.

    The thing watched back.

    Sixteen years later, the thing would be called Mackie Doyle.

    Sixteen years is a long time to live in a place that's slowly killing you.

    Allergic to iron and blood, unable to step on consecrated ground, Mackie should have died years ago when he was first traded for that human child in the small town of Gentry. He's dying slowly right now.

    No one wants to talk about the strange things that happen in Gentry. Not Mackie's best friend Roswell, not his parents, not even Emma.

    No one except Tate Stewart.

    Tate wants answers about her sister's death. After years of trying to be invisible, all Mackie wants is to be left alone to play his bass and forget his troubles. But Mackie is dying and if he's willing to look at the ugly things that lurk beneath Gentry he might be able to find some answers about Tate's sister and about his own place in Gentry in The Replacement (2010) by Brenna Yovanoff.

    Atmospheric and sometimes horrible, The Replacement is a story about monsters and things that come out after dark. It is also a story of fierce affection where even monsters can find a place and, perhaps, earn redemption. Yovanoff's writing is haunting and strangely enchanting. Mackie is an unlikely hero but one that will charm readers with his breezy style and honesty.

    Everyone can tell you about how this book sets itself apart as a horror story. A lot of people will mention how cleverly Yovanoff interprets the changeling folklore in her debut novel. But what I really want to underscore is how much this story is about the power of love and friendship (even if the deliciously creepy cover with illustration by Jonathan Barkat and design by Natalie C. Sousa might suggest otherwise).

    The Replacement is a fantastic fantasy that is sure to be going places. Definitely one to watch (and one of my favorites) from 2010.

    Possible Pairings: White Cat by Holly Black, The Demon's Lexicon by Sarah Rees Brennan, The War for the Oaks by Emma Bull, The Blue Girl by Charles De Lint, Fire and Hemlock by Diana Wynne Jones, Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater, The Last of the High Kings by Kate Thompson, "Hallelujah" by Leonard Cohen, "The Stolen Child" by the Waterboys

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 15, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Eerie and Awesome!

    An eerie, haunting story that will make you wonder why anyone would want to live in Gentry.

    We start off with Mackie Doyle, who knows he's different from his family and his friends. He has super dark eyes, can't stand being near any kind of iron, and is forced to keep a low profile. He's not the only thing off in his town though, and everyone seems to know that Gentry is a eerie place to live. When Mackie starts to get extremely sick, and his friend Tate's sister is pronounced dead, Mackie will have no choice but to dig into the twisted underground of Gentry.

    I have to say, I originally bought this book when it was first released, but I kept putting it off. As more and more reviews came out, the jury seemed very mixed on the story, so I kept putting it off. Well, I shouldn't have because I really enjoyed The Replacement! It's a very different story, unlike anything I've read before. It was eerie, dark, twisted, and intense. It also had amazing quotes, and that's a huge plus for me!

    I adored Mackie's character. He knows he's different, he feels like he's never belonged, and he tries not to stand out because the town would hate him if they knew the truth. In reality, Mackie always belonged, he proved that you can be different and still be normal. Mackie is so real for me in the way he pins after hot girls, hangs with a certain group of friends, plays bass, but ends up in love with one tough chick. I loved him and was rooting for him till the end.

    Tate... Oh man Tate is a tough little cookie. She's almost like a pitbull but still shows love to those who actully mean something to her. I also loved Roswell... Now he is a TRUE friend. One I would most certainly always want on my side!

    I also loved the scary town and mysterious underground that the author created. I personally would never want to live there, but it was oh so intriguing to read about!

    I thought it was a fabulous story and very unique. I love how there's romance, and it moves like a real love life, but it's not the main story. I also loved the darkness of it all, books like these fascinate me. If you're on the fence about this one, I suggest giving it a shot! :)

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 23, 2014

    Anonymous

    It is one of my new all time favorites. I am not usually into thriller kind of novels but this one made it so I couldn't look away. I strongly suggest reading this book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 11, 2014

    My two cents

    I havemnt read it yet but i have such cover love for it

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  • Posted June 16, 2013

    I absolutely loved this book. The story is unique and offers a r

    I absolutely loved this book. The story is unique and offers a reprieve from the currently popular vampire and angel/demon love stories. It's dark in its own sense, but the mystery and suspense kept me unable to put the book down. 

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  • Posted March 22, 2013

    Loved this unique book.

    Loved this unique book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 24, 2012

    Great

    Very creative

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 20, 2012

    LExI likes this book read my review!

    This book is ok I dont like how Alice and Tate have a fight I mean girls like Alice cant fight. This book was a good book the cover drew me in the first time I saw it I knew I wanted to read it. Even though some people thought that the thing on the branch above the cover were to try to kill the baby there not. Im not a spoiler but they are to protect the baby if you read the book you will know. Its a fairly good book it has some not so good parts but over all good. I like how she has a way of showing vast romance from Mackie but not so much from Tate.
    If you like fantsy and love romance the series Shiver is a great book I literally cried in the last book. The series goes Shiver, Linger, and Forever. They are my favorite books. Tje romance in The Replacement is very limited but in the parts that there is its pretty intense. I recemend this book to anyone who likes a good creepy book every now and again.
    -LExI

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  • Posted January 29, 2012

    Dark and Beautiful Story

    I loved the book enough to finish it in a single session. The story is wonderful and never feels forced, the characters are enjoyable and never too perfect (especially the protagonist, who is selfish, but believably so), and the theme of a town that smiles away the harsh realities that lives right beneath them connected with me. It's a long book and it takes about a hundred pages before you reach the real meat of the story, but it's worth a read. It's a unique story that doesn't sound derivative of anything else.

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