The Hollow Ones by Guillermo del Toro & Chuck Hogan

Blackwood Tapes, Book 1

Synopsis: A horrific crime that defies ordinary explanation. A rookie FBI agent in dangerous, uncharted territory. An extraordinary hero for the ages.

Odessa Hardwicke’s life is derailed when she’s forced to turn her gun on her partner, Walt Leppo, a decorated FBI agent who turns suddenly, inexplicably violent while apprehending a rampaging murderer. The shooting, justified by self-defense, shakes the young FBI agent to her core. Devastated, Odessa is placed on desk leave pending a full investigation. But what most troubles Odessa isn’t the tragedy itself-it’s the shadowy presence she thought she saw fleeing the deceased agent’s body after his death. Questioning her future with the FBI and her sanity, Hardwicke accepts a low-level assignment to clear out the belongings of a retired agent in the New York office. What she finds there will put her on the trail of a mysterious figure named John Silence, a man of enormous means who claims to have been alive for centuries, and who is either an unhinged lunatic, or humanity’s best and only defense against unspeakable evil.

Review: I love Guillermo Del Toro’s movies, so I was very curious to discover this novel to see if the atmosphere was the same as the one we find in his adaptations.

The story is divided into three points of view: Hugo Blackwood, Solomon, and Odessa Hardwicke in three different periods of history. But we still mainly follow Odessa Harwicke. Our heroine, after following a suspect, is forced to shoot her teammate when he tries to kill a little girl. She doesn’t know what happened and everything gets worse when she sees volutes coming out of her partner’s body, accompanied by the smell of sulfur. That’s when her life is completely turned upside down. After being advised to contact a man named Hugo Blackwood, a man who claims to be five hundred years old, she will discover a world she knows nothing about and that will change her view of things.

It was a different and very original novel that I enjoyed discovering, even if I had a little trouble getting into the story. Having said that, I must admit that I am curious to see what happens next, this being a first volume. Hugo Blackwood is very mysterious and I can’t wait to learn more about him. On his side, Odessa has a lot to show us and I can’t wait to see it all!