My Thoughts On: Switched by Amanda Hocking + GIVEAWAY!

Posted January 6, 2012 by Asheley in Uncategorized / 40 Comments

Switched (Trylle Trilogy #1) by Amanda Hocking
Published by St. Martin’s Griffin 

Publish Date:  January 3, 2012 
293 Pages
Source:  ARC from Publisher 
Switched by Amanda Hocking

When Wendy Everly was six-years-old, her mother was convinced she was a monster and tried to kill her. It isn’t until eleven years later that Wendy discovers her mother might have been right. With the help of Finn Holmes, Wendy finds herself in a world she never knew existed – a world both beautiful and frightening, and Wendy’s not sure she wants to be a part of it. -(summary from Goodreads.com)

My Thoughts:  It is pretty typical for many YA readers these days to know about Amanda Hocking. If you read digitally or travel the Goodreads circuit as frequently as I do, chances are you’ve come across her name a ton of times. Why? Because since she began writing and self-publishing her digital books a few years ago, she’s sold over a million copies. That’s impressive, y’all. Now, lucky for readers who prefer or need paper copies, Hocking’s Trylle Trilogy is being re-released with updated covers and backing by St. Martin’s Press. 


I was so fortunate to be asked of my interest in Switched. 
I loved it. Actually, I devoured it. 
Want to know why?


1. The Characters. There’s a great big cast in this book and they are all a ton of fun to read. The main focus, however, is on Wendy and Finn. 

  • Wendy Everly. 17-year-old protagonist. Quick tempered with a bit of attitude. Fiercely loyal and loving to her brother and aunt, with whom she lives after her mother tried to kill her with a butcher knife when she was just six years old. Wendy knows she’s just a little different than everyone else but she can’t put her finger on exactly why. 
  • Finn Holmes. Handsome, strong, and oddly mysterious. Stares at Wendy a little too much during class. After sharing a dance at a school function, they both find themselves kinda crushing on each other. 
ALL of the characters – human and trylle – are unique and enjoyable. Wendy and Finn are somewhat developed, but I think there is more beneath their surface than we learn in Switched. In fact, I think there is more to most of the characters than we realize. As a huge fan of characterization, I’m looking forward to reading Torn (Trylle #2) and getting to know them all even more. 

2. The Backstory. Wendy is a changeling, meaning she is trylle (aka a troll) that was switched at birth for a human baby. Wendy’s mother had suspicions that Wendy was not her true child, which is why she tried to kill her eleven years ago. But why do the trylle switch babies? Great question! 

Trylle children are taken to human host families – chosen specifically for their wealth and sophistication – to gain a good education and inheritance to bring back to the Trylle tribe. This increases the tribe’s overall wealth and intelligence. Wendy’s human family was a family of means and Wendy had a comfortable upbringing. Coincidentally, in the Trylle kingdom, it turns out that Wendy is a princess. 

3. The Power. The trylle tend to have powers which vary depending on their rank in society and blood line. Wendy, being of high society, has the highly coveted and very powerful ability of Persuasion. This means that Wendy can look at someone and influence their thoughts and actions with her own thoughts. Basically, she can make others do or say or think whatever she wants them to. At the start of the book, this was a relatively new thing to her, and largely underdeveloped. She didn’t know what it meant and she thought she was a freak. It is also the reason Finn came to find her. See, Finn is a tracker, and his job is to track down changelings and bring them back home to Förening. As Wendy’s very strong power of persuasion seems to be developing early, Finn has been assigned to retrieve her for the Queen. 

4. The World. Förening, a gated community where the Trylle live, hidden along the Mississippi river in Minnesota. It is described interestingly and beautifully, and appears to be a world of wealth. The community is beautiful, the Queen’s (and therefore Wendy’s) home is beautiful, and the gardens and landscape are beautiful. This to be completely expected from a beautiful paranormal species. 

I am thinking and hoping that there will be more world-building in Torn, as the world in Switched exists largely inside the home of the Queen. 

5. Paranormal. I have never read about trolls before so I had no idea what to expect when I began Switched. I ended up reading the book in one sitting. I’ve always thought of trolls as ugly little creatures, but the trylle are actually quite beautiful. The mythology of the trylle was fascinating and fun, and I turned the pages fast! Every time I thought I had a grasp on a situation, there was a twist of some sort. I loved it.

6. Romance. The crush that started at the high school dance…you know, the one between Wendy and Finn…well, it led to a slowly developing relationship that led to a slowly burning romance. It was great and delicious to me. Sometimes these romances are predictable, and that is okay with me, but they are always so, so good to read. The catch here – and it is a big one – is that the love between Wendy and Finn is strictly forbidden. I did not realize until I was extremely devoted to this couple that there is no way that the relationship would be allowed…Finn is of a different, much lower social class than Wendy. OH. MY. GRACIOUS. They are both so in love with each other – the love kept jumping off of the pages – but it just would not be allowed. So some things happened and OH. MY. GRACIOUS. 


In addition to the trylle and the romance, there was the aspect of Wendy’s royal lineage. This made for an interesting storyline as she never asked nor wanted to be a princess, particularly when she finds out the price she has to pay to be in the royal family. Another wonderful and unique part of the story was the other baby…you know, the one that was switched with Wendy. That baby plays a pretty large role in the book and it is looking like that now-grown baby will be in at least the next book in the series as well. I LOVED that part of the story so much and I know other readers will too. Loved it

Switched is a really fun, fast-paced book with a mythology that was new to me and some action thrown in here and there. I loved it. I devoured it. I was sad that I couldn’t start book two right away. I have high hopes that when the next book comes out it will be even more action-packed and character-developed. Torn is being released on February 28, 2012…followed closely by Ascend in April 2012. 

**I received a review copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest opinion and review. I received no compensation for my thoughts. Thank you St. Martin’s Press! 

And now for the Giveaway!

St. Martin’s Press and Amanda Hocking 
have generously provided 
~ ONE SIGNED COPY of SWITCHED ~
for this giveaway.
Thank you, St. Martin’s Press!  


Giveaway Information 
  • You must be at least 13 years old to enter. 
  • Deadline for entry is midnight Friday, January 13, 2012.
  • This contest is open to Everyone! 
  • Following this blog is not required, but appreciated!



a Rafflecopter giveaway

Asheley

About Asheley

Asheley is a Southern girl. She loves Carolina blue skies, Ben & Jerry's ice cream, and NC craft beer. She loves all things history but prefers books over everything.

You can find her somewhere in North Carolina, daydreaming about the ocean.

Find Asheley on Litsy @intothehallofbooks!

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40 responses to “My Thoughts On: Switched by Amanda Hocking + GIVEAWAY!

  1. I won a signed copy of Hollowland and I soooo want this to put next to it! 😀 The new covers for this series are seriously stunning. Major cover envy over here!!

  2. Amanda Hocking is really the Cinderella story of self-publishing, and I think that is so fantastic! I also am loving the trend of releasing a series so close together, it really saves my sanity. Thanks for the fantastic review, I'm definitely going to be picking this one up.

  3. Thanks you for this opportunity to win a signed book. I would be delighted to discover this serie.
    i've seen the other covers on another blog and i must admit this red one is more strikking but for me it's also has something more dark with it ( the grey one was more mystical)

  4. I love the new covers! I think they look amazing but I also like the other ones, of the Kindle editions (I think)! 😀 I can't wait to read it.

  5. I absolutely love the new cover! It is beautiful and totally makes me want to pick it up straight away and read it! Love the line at the top "what if your whole life was based on a lie"

  6. The cover is stunning! Amanda is certainly one lucky lady to nabbed a book deal. Now the rest of the world can get to know how amazing her book is !

  7. THis is one of the best covers I have seen in quite a while.

    Hope the contents are just as good !

    Thanks for the giveaway.

    Carol T

    buddytho {at} gmail DOT com

  8. MadameIzzy

    Loved this series.
    Would so love to have a signed copy of the book to add to my collection.
    Have read nearly everything this woman has written.
    One of my favourite authors.

  9. I really love the covers of all the books in this series. My sister was telling me she noticed that with every book the color become lighter. I am really excited to read this whole series! Great review!

  10. I love Amanda Hocking's books. Her books covers are very eye catching. I am not sure, but I think that is how I picked up my first book by her.

    Judy

  11. New covers are so beautiful! I have heard about the books before, but thanks to the cover releases I almost didn't recognize them. It would be great to finally read this series.
    Thanks a lot for the giveaway:)

  12. Amanda Hocking is AMAZING! I first discovered her My Blood approves series, then found Hollowland (my favorite), then the Trylle trilogy. I am so excited she is finally getting the recognition she deserves and having them published on paper.

  13. Thanks for the review, I would definitely love to read it to see how good it is 🙂 And the cover, wow, it's beautiful. The red sky makes the cover completely wonderful, can't wait to see it in person!

  14. I've only sort of heard about this book, but I don't even know what it's about. I plan to remedy this with the new hard copies since I never know what's going on in the ebook world.

  15. Na

    Amanda is a new author for me but I have heard so much about her writing journey and she inspires indie authors everywhere 🙂

  16. So I'm reading through what you thought and Im loving it. Switched sounds amazing! But I do have to admit I stopped at The Backstory, but thats because I want to get to know the story firsthand. I am seriously glad that so many people loved Amanda Hockings book enough that Switched is being re-released in the pysical form

  17. Thanks for the amazing giveaway!
    I'd heard about these before when it was self-published, and I gotta say, the new covers are absolutely GORGEOUS. Totally can't wait to get my hands on this one 🙂

  18. Ok, so the cover really is beautiful. I think it's the color choice that really caught my eye on google reader.

    But what has me hooked is the changling/troll mythology. I don't know that I've seen too many people try and tackle that one. Very cool.

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