The Replacement

Yovanoff, Brenna

Book - 2010
Average Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
The Replacement
Sixteen-year-old Mackie Doyle knows that he replaced a human child when he was just an infant, and when a friend's sister disappears he goes against his family's and town's deliberate denial of the problem to confront the beings that dwell under the town, tampering with human lives.

Publisher: New York : Razorbill, c2010
ISBN: 1595143815
Branch Call Number: YOVANOFF B
Yovanoff, B
Characteristics: 343 p. ; 22 cm


From the critics

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Mar 09, 2015
  • FindingJane rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

This novel grips you from its opening paragraph and from there a daunting tale unfolds. Playing on the old folk tales of changelings, fairy babes that are left in cribs while human babies are spirited away, “The Replacement” gives this legend a darker and more fearful turn.

The fictional world of Gentry calls to mind Joss Whedon’s Sunnydale, Lakeside in Neil Gaiman’s “American Gods” or any of Stephen King’s novels set in twisted versions of Bangor, Maine. The seeming serenity of the town requires the terrified compliance of its denizens and a willful blindness as to what’s truly happening beneath the surface.

The underworld of Mayhem isn’t an altered version of the town above but a world unto itself and Ms. Yovanoff’s prose takes flight as she limns these nightmare palaces, the creatures that occupy them and the sisters who rule them. There is poetry in her lines as she writes about gleeful dead girls, a sadistic masochist and the strange love-hate relationship these folks have with the townspeople who try desperately to appease the fey and stay out of their grip.

The human characters are themselves a motley crew, not all of them likeable or even understandable. They teeter on a knife edge between scared denial and harsh reality and risk toppling over when they decide to stand up and reclaim one of their own. When matters take a dire turn, it’s not at all certain that any of them will survive a fight where they don’t know the rules or wield the proper weapons.

This novel chills, terrifies and has you holding your breath. It’s not light reading matter and several times you might have to fight to keep from putting it down as it describes all the horror that comes after death—the decrepitude, the stench, the inescapable rot. Yet it also aches with the connections we form almost in spite of ourselves and how love can redeem even those who think themselves unlovable. There is joy and grief here; Ms. Yovanoff’s writing slowly brings us to the realization that both are needed to complete life.

Feb 25, 2015
  • bandblair rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

I think the cover is more interesting than the story, but Mackie was a really strong character.

Nov 07, 2014
  • LibraryK8 rated this: 3.5 stars out of 5.

Mackie is a bit moody for my taste as a protagonist (I prefer mine cocky and overconfident) but I loved the idea of the story focusing on a "replacement" child. If you loved Labyrinth you will love this book!

Aug 13, 2013
  • tocch101 rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

An interesting story that ties in to so many different mythologies. The characters were interesting and believable with great characteristics and motivations. A great read.

Nov 24, 2012
  • beautylovetruth rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

I enjoyed this book, particularly in the fast-paced portions. I felt very connected to Mackie and his plight of being different... very different. He was aware of his circumstances and he allowed that to stop him from doing "normal" things. The plot twists and turns into an interesting mix of fantasy and coming of age. It was a fun read and it would be perfect for teens today.

Aug 28, 2012

this book was really good and i found the plot to be awsome and original.

Jul 25, 2012
  • ARTard rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

Well, I didn't really know what to expect when reading this book but I have to say that it was good. I found the whole baby-snatching thing a pretty awesome plot twist in this (dare I say it) 'coming of age' sort of story. I found there were a couple slow bits and a couple cool fast paced bits that I did enjoy. I don't really know what I think of the book overall. It's an amazing idea, the characters were cool and funny and interesting. It was well written that's for sure. I can see why it's so popular.

Jun 11, 2012
  • lokiboo262 rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

This book is amazing it's the perfect blend of a simple teenage " not fitting in" clause with an extra added kick of replacements

Jun 09, 2012
  • ssollie rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

I loved this book. Made me skip doing other things so that I could finish it. Loved how conflicted and complicated Mackie was and loved all of his friends. A different world populated by characters with the same issues we all have. I've got her next book on hold, let's see if she can do original twice in a row.

Apr 01, 2012
  • hardkorelish rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

This book was surprisingly great. I wanted to read it about a year ago when I saw it in the book store but it got pushed off for a while. I'm really glad I finally got a chance to power through this. If you're a fan of the supernatural genre you will be as pleasantly surprised as I was with something completely different than anything else out there. I also loved reading frmo a male perspective.

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Oct 13, 2010
  • couges rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

Violence: General Gore.

Oct 13, 2010
  • couges rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

Sexual Content: Pretty liberal and suggestive.

Oct 13, 2010
  • couges rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

Coarse Language: Drops the F bomb about a dozen times and various other profane words.


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Nov 07, 2014
  • LibraryK8 rated this: 3.5 stars out of 5.

Seventeen years ago someone or something snuck into the home of the town’s pastor. They took a baby boy out of his crib and left Mackie in his place before disappearing back into the night. No one talks about it, but this isn’t the first time this has happened in the small town of Gentry. Now Mackie is a junior in high school and just trying to avoid standing out, but he can’t help it with his blond hair, pale complexion and black eyes. He is not of this world.
When the little sister of his schoolmate Tate goes missing Mackie travels into the underworld of Gentry to get her back and hopefully discover something about the place he came from and perhaps discover what happened to the boy he Replaced so many years ago.

Jun 11, 2012
  • lokiboo262 rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

The protagonist Mackie Doyle is aware of his differences his parents are aware of his differences and the people who he closely resembles in comosition know that he is very special and they want him.
Using his ownself-preservatino techniques against him they use Mr.Doyle for their private agenda.
Mackie knows that he is wrong and attempts to right his wrong doings by helping his crush by doing the one thing that he can do- saving her sister.


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Jun 11, 2012
  • lokiboo262 rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

lokiboo262 thinks this title is suitable for between the ages of 13 and 15


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