Clare B. Dunkle

Reviews & Edition Information for The Hollow Kingdom

By Clare B. Dunkle. New York: Henry Holt, 2003.
Edited by Reka Simonsen.
Book One of The Hollow Kingdom Trilogy.
A folklore-based fantasy novel for young adults.

Black Forest waterfall

WINNER of the 2004 Mythopoeic Fantasy Award for Children's Literature, which "...honors books for younger readers (from 'Young Adults' to picture books for beginning readers), in the tradition of The Hobbit or The Chronicles of Narnia."

An ALA 2005 Best Book for Young Adults.

A Bank Street College of Education Best Children's Book.

A 2005-2006 South Carolina Book Awards nominee.

A Publishers Weekly Flying Start honoree.

A Junior Library Guild selection.

A 2004 Sonderbooks Stand-Out.

Listed in "The Best YA Books of 2003" by Locus: The Magazine of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Field.

Aschehoug has released a Danish edition translated by Birgitte Brix. The Danish title is Det Skjulte Rige. Hardcover and paperback are both available.

A Danish audio edition should be available now as well.

Thorndike Press has released a large-print edition.

Recorded Books has released an unabridged audiocassette edition:
A VOYA 2005 A+ Audiobook.
"This is a fine recording of a solid adventure fantasy."
—School Library Journal
"A stellar performance of a winning novel."
—Kliatt Review (Rating: exceptional)

"... First novelist Dunkle turns out a luminously polished fantasy that starts off strong and just gets better. ... A keen romantic tension builds between Marak and Kate, who move, credibly and engrossingly, from the roles of predator and prey to inhabiting positions of peers. ... A masterly debut, it will almost certainly leave audiences hoping for more."
—Publishers Weekly (Starred review)

"Calling to mind aspects of Persephone as well as Beauty and the Beast, Dunkle develops her characters in such a way that readers sympathize not only with the sisters but also with the Goblin King and his subjects. ... Once fantasy fans begin this story, they will be unable to put it down."
—VOYA (5Q: Hard to imagine it being better written)

"Drawing on everything from Christina Rossetti's, 'Goblin Market' to the classic fairy tale 'Beauty and the Beast' the book is a fascinating, can't-put-it-down ride into the unknown. ... Equally as adept at characters as she is at descriptions, Dunkle weaves a delicate multi-layered tale. ... Readers will certainly look forward to other books in this 'Hollow Kingdom' series. It's well worth the reading."

"Kate is a wispy blonde with a backbone of steel and Marak is an ironic monster with oddly tender sentiments. The author takes the fairy-tale idea of equating beauty with goodness (and wispiness with frailty) and turns it on its head, while offering (for the era) a 'shockingly overeducated' protagonist who is able, through her own intelligence, to come to terms with the consequences—and rewards—of her own endeavors. Smooth writing and clever dialogue spark the action and make this an unusually wry look at the fantasy world beneath the ground."
—The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books

"All seems poised for clever Kate to outmaneuver the villain, but the seemingly conventional setup gives way to something far more intriguing. ... This is a fresh, powerful twist on the Beauty-and-the-Beast theme, and the impact of Dunkle's evocative storytelling lingers long after the final page."

"A tale that will captivate fantasy lovers. ... Yes, a goblin is the hero (or is he?) of the story—but a hero unlike any in the fairy tales. His underground kingdom is a richly imagined Neverland. ... This is [the author's] first novel; we must hope it is not her last."
—Lorgnette: Heart of Texas Reviews

"By turns, beautiful and horrifying. ... For the girl who loves fantasy and is beginning to wonder about love, this story will take her on a fascinating journey."
—Children's Literature

"You just gotta love Disney. And if you do, you will love Clare Dunkle, too. ... This magical romance ... portrays the power of an open mind and the ability to surpass all biases in life."
—Teen Newsweek

"An amusing story of a difficult romance ... with a spirited heroine, a wicked guardian, a repulsive suitor, and a lot of colorful goblin folk who finally teach Kate that the real monsters don't necessarily look weird"
—Locus Magazine

"An intelligent story with a likable, believable main character and a good dose of otherworldly magic ... The Hollow Kingdom is a rich and worthwhile read, at times frightening, at others warm but always entertaining."
—January Magazine

"This is an interesting fantasy world with well-realized characters. ... Marak ... definitely comes across as something other than human. ... Kate is surely a heroine to be reckoned with, and girls will relate to her predicament."
—School Library Journal

"This is an amazing tale for a first novel, ... incredibly detailed, ... remarkable depth. Don't start this book if you've got somewhere else to be in the next few hours because you won't want to put it down."
—Smart Writers Journal

"Clare Dunkle brings a fresh new voice and a fresh new vision to the high art of fantasy. She creates a world filled with intense excitement, terror, beauty, and love—a world as persuasive as it is remarkable. Splendid!"
—Lloyd Alexander

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