• Booktastically Amazing

What We Harvest (ARC Review)// Dying over storytelling

The words 'running' and 'cardio' are my worst nightmare.
 

Spoiler-Free Synopsis:


For fans of Wilder Girls comes a nightmarish debut guaranteed to keep you up through the night, about an idyllic small town poisoned by its past, and one girl who must fight the strange disease that's slowly claiming everyone she loves.


Wren owes everything she has to her home, Hollow’s End, a centuries-old, picture perfect American town. Tourists travel miles to marvel at its miracle crops, including the shimmering, iridescent wheat of Wren’s family farm. Until five months ago.


That’s when the quicksilver mercury blight first surfaced, poisoning the farms of Hollow’s End one by one. It began by consuming the crops--thick, silver sludge bleeding from the earth. Next were the animals. Infected livestock and wild creatures alike staggered off into the woods by day—only to return at night, their eyes, fogged white, leering from the trees.


Then, the blight came for the neighbors.


Wren is among the last locals standing. And the blight has finally come for her, too. Now, the only one she can turn to is the last person she wants to call: her ex, Derek. They haven’t spoken in months, but Wren and Derek still have one thing in common—Hollow’s End means everything to them. Only there’s much they don’t know about their hometown and its renowned miracle crops. And they’re about to discover that miracles aren’t free.


Their ancestors have an awful lot to pay for, and Wren and Derek are the only ones left to settle old debts.

 

Details of the book:


Hardcover, 336 pages

Expected publication: March 22nd 2022 by Delacorte

Genres: Horror, Young Adult, Thriller, Mystery, Paranormal, Fantasy, Science Fiction


 

I would be the first one to die in a scenario like this.


Rating:✨✨✨✨ 4.0

*glances at infected zombie-like people*

*keeps walking because it's obviously the smart thing when the girl lost her eyeglasses mid attack and is now blind*

*sees infected yet endearing dog through blurry gaze*

*starts devilishly sprinting*

COME HERE BABY, LET ME LOVE U-


And that is exactly why.

Seriously, I have literally no self-control.


In one word, this book was so FUN. And yes, that's slightly uh... disturbing considering what this book is about- but come on, monsters chasing, infection everywhere- almost-death everywhere-


What more can a girl ask for?


I read books like this for the scare factor. The funny, light sort of scare. The one that makes me doubt if I closed the door, if I sneezed correctly, if on my way to visit Hades I accidentally angered Cerberus-- that type of scare. And this book, DE.LI.VERED.


The plot in and of itself took me far longer to understand than I want to admit, mostly because the vivid imagery threatened to decimate my mortal existence.

Seriously.

My life was in peril.

*peaks behind hands to see if fictional husbands have arrived*

Gosh darn it, DO I HAVE TO BE IN LOVE WITH ANOTHER MAN FOR Y'ALL TO ARRIVE OR AM I JUST NOT GOOD ENOUGH FOR YOU-


*cough* Pardon my french interruption. Back to the plot and all it's variants- the storytelling was so beautiful and precise and just MAGNIFICENT. I wrote that word five times to get correctly. I give up. (I was doing Algebra y'all, it kills brains.

Cells.

Brells)


And so well done it made me want to read at the speed of Sonic on something (I'm not going to mention drugs, I'm not going to mention drugs, I'm not going to mention drugs-) to be able to absorb as much writing ingenuity as I was able to. Even after many days of reading other books and completely forgetting the fact that this wonderful one was waiting to be reviewed, I still can picture ever so clearly how the setting was described.


Oooo! I just love getting chills from good descriptions. It's a different type of swoon, instead of being like 'TAKE ME, I'LL BE YOUR QUEEN- FRIEND-ANYTHING-' with a specific character, this type of swoon involves saying 'I feel so blessed that my eyes could stick unto the page and start leaching off the words to try and create a hybrid of my own.'


Back to the plot though, it was so good. The intrigue, the mystery, the sensing stress of an impending bomb going off. Metaphorically, not that bombs didn't go off in the book-

I feel like the foreshadowing was the only I really had something against, apart from the 'PEOPLE DIDN'T DIE THO' part of the bullet list I made for this book.


It felt too intense for what the outcome was. I don't know what I really expected, just maybe something with more WHAM BAM CRY INTO YOUR PILLOW MA'AM factor. Especially since I went into this book hoping that, BUT.

And not Mari Antoinette's (I need one of her dresses ASAP, if y'all have her number, please feel free to share-)

That's because I like being shattered after a book ends and although it's a problem, books that end on good notes still make me happy!


(see example #1 of Booksy using the exclamation mark to fix the fact that the things she likes in books would be red flags in real life)


I guess I expected more of a vicious past or backstory to warrant all the horror the townspeople felt against it.

It still was pretty disturbing, though-


But you know, the fact that it gripped me from the first sentence led me to not care very much of how easy of an ending it had.

Ugh, addictive books feel like the best of ways to pass the time.


Then we have the characters!! You'll find later on who's Teddy, but I just want to say that she was ABOVE EVERYTHING. An angel, a goddess, a freaking emblem of greatness.


I don't even care about the rest- she just is and will continue to be.


However, we have the awesome MC going for the book too so YEAH, I'M ATTACKED FROM ALL SIDES BY GREATNESS- She felt realistic, her thought process reminded me of what I would definitely not do in a scenario like this because remember, I'll be perished. Deathed. The word kill sounds too harsh. She cared for her family with a courageous streak, did everything to find out what had happened. No clue was too difficult for her, no puzzle too hard. Seriously, I can't even be mad at her because I have absolutely no idea what I would do if I was in her place. I don't know if I- okay, I would've undoubtedly been eaten, so there's that! And she survived, y'all!!


(see example #2 and #3 of Booksy using the exclamation mark to hide that tiny voice that wished they'd all died just for the torture of it.)


Later we have the lovey dovey, six foot tall, GAWGEOUS love interest. He felt like a mix of a golden retriever and a box, not cardboard but like, solid foam *snort*. He was so devoted, so nice! He cared incredibly much for the heroine in this story, going to immense lengths to assure that his family and the love of his life were out of harm's way.


Sometimes by doing the opposite of sane- but it was understood. I liked him like I like Butterflies, from a distance. Because if one of those awesome flying canvases gets tangled in my hair- we are K.O and nope-ing the heck out of there.


The romance had so much going for it. A good reason for breaking up, an adorable backstory full of adorable...ness. But it kind of fell flat at times. Maybe because the reconciliation was too abrupt or perhaps because the characters were like:


'How can I stay apart when we were always meant to be?'


Hm

HMMMMMMM

They did everything for each other, though! And really, that's what counts.


(see example #4 of Booksy using the exclamation mark to disguise the urge to separate them for a whole 6 book series and then when they reunite, they've falling for other people, and it's the kind of bittersweet pain that stays long after the last page.)


Quick and simple list of what Booksy felt (whilst thinking in third person because why not?) about the background characters:


- They added enough to the story to make me feel they were present yet not enough to mind if one of them got bitten to death.

- Teddy is on another tier.

- Even though I didn't really see their point of existence (I say this in the most lovable way) , they aided into some of the best heart pounding moment of this story. Running, falling when they were just so close to freedom.

*sigh*

Those moments were so hauntingly breathtaking.

Also, stupefying.


Remember, my Brells are not in.

This is the skull doing all the work.


On a closing note, if the synopsis isn't for you, read this for the writing.

And the descriptions, because oh my bloody hecking mathematical hellish equations, they were perplexing. I truly felt like I was in the farm with the MC, digging up the mercury colored blight and getting the worst of the news at the same time. I literally tasted the luscious multicolored bread and the ghost watermelon juice dribbled on my lips- I'm going to cry- Seriously though, the story was great, characters were likeable, could've been more terrifying, but I'm not saying that it wasn't because it definitely was at times.


And really? I can't stop thinking that it was so gosh darned fun.


~👑Special thanks to Netgalley for the ARC in exchange for an honest review!👑~


HONORABLE MENTIONS:


  • Did I mention that Teddy can own me?

  • The way my breath was held for the duration of 50 pages while everything and everyone was being killed-

  • I love how the blight was described, the feel, the texture, even the taste.


Are you willing to fangirl and or be traumatized by this book anytime soon?