Most people have no idea goblins live in the woods around the small town of Bellwater, Washington. But some are about to find out. Skye, a young barista and artist, falls victim to a goblin curse in the forest one winter night, rendering her depressed and silenced, unable to speak of what happened. Her older sister, Livy, is at wit's end trying to understand what's wrong with her. Local mechanic Kit would know, but he doesn't talk of such things: he's the human liaison for the goblin tribe, a job he keeps secret and never wanted, thrust on him by an ancient family contract.
I received this book in exchange for an honest review from Netgalley. I requested this book as a “wish” throug their website about a year ago, and recently had my wish granted. So the book has been out for a while, but, since I haven’t had a chance to read it, I was really excited to give it a try. Plus, I love this cover. It’s gorgeous!
The setting of this book, small town in Western Washington, was fun for me. Since I recently took a trip out to Seattle, I felt more familiar with this location than I would have a year ago. And the author really takes advantage of the nearby National Forest, which plays an essential role in the story. I always enjoy when plots are specific to their location, so the setting was a real treat for me.
The plot of the book is really what hooked me into this story. It starts out with such an interesting premise, there are goblins hiding in your forest. And then it adds in curses and magic and secrets, so there was a lot of promise of adventure and excitement here. Unfortunately, after the curses and magic are set up, the book turns into something close to soft-core erotica, which the characters all being tied up in their love life and focusing on sex. This slowed down the plot significantly and left me wondering when we’d get back to the story I loved at the start of the book.
I struggled the most with the characters in this book. For as small a book as this was, it just felt like there were too many character, so they weren’t all fleshed out. One character, Skye’s love interest, actually seemed like he could be completely taken out of the story and it wouldn’t have had much affect, if any. I didn’t feel like I really understood any of the characters and, while their motivation for their actions were clear and there was high stakes for the plot, I didn’t feel invested in them by the end of the book.
The Goblins of Bellwater is a fun and quick read. The setting is intriguing and unique and there is a great concept for the plot. The middle of the book was slow for me and didn’t fit the rest of the book and I struggled to connect with the characters.