Here is the summary of the book:
Mackenzie and Amy were best friends. Until Amy was brutally murdered. Since then, Mac’s life has been turned upside down. She is being haunted by Amy in her dreams, and an extremist group called the Trackers has come to Mac’s hometown of Hemlock to hunt down Amy’s killer: A white werewolf. Lupine syndrome—also known as the werewolf virus—is on the rise across the country. Many of the infected try to hide their symptoms, but bloodlust is not easy to control. Wanting desperately to put an end to her nightmares, Mac decides to investigate Amy’s murder herself. She discovers secrets lurking in the shadows of Hemlock, secrets about Amy’s boyfriend, Jason, her good pal Kyle, and especially her late best friend. Mac is thrown into a maelstrom of violence and betrayal that puts her life at risk. Kathleen Peacock’s thrilling novel is the first in the Hemlock trilogy, a spellbinding urban fantasy series filled with provocative questions about prejudice, trust, lies, and love.
Werewolves are out in the open....no longer do they remain in the shadows - shrouded in mystery. The werewolf virus - the Lupine Syndrome - is the reason of it all and they come after you when they feel the bloodlust which begins to grow after their first kill. This is how our story in small town Hemlock (same as the title). Amy, Mackenzie, Jason and Kyle are best friends. When tragedy strikes. Amy was brutally murdered by a bloodthirsty white werewolf. She was the third to be murdered by a werewolf in the region and frankly speaking they are worried. Mackenzie, Kyle and Jason's friendship is brutally affected by this ordeal.
Mackenzie keeps getting haunting dreams of Amy, Jason has turned to bury his grief under the guise of liquid courage and Kyle has his own problems to deal with. Mackenzie does all she can to keep Jason and Kyle in check. But things spiral out of her control when she decides that the killer werewolf needs to be found and brought to justice, secrets are revealed about Jason, Kyle and Amy that Mackenzie never know and couldn't hope to comprehend.
Hemlock comes as a breath of fresh air in the course of my young adult reading history. In all the young adult books I have read so far, usually the werewolves are paired with vampires and/or witches but here they reign supreme and alone. The author has not only given us a perfect storyline but a perfect setting for her werewolves...people are afraid and when they are afraid they take drastic measures to counteract their fears. The lead characters Jason, Mackenzie and Kyle give much fodder to the mix. All of them multi-layered.....peeled off one after another as horrifying secrets and pasts are revealed. But what really made the story a success was the dynamic chemistry between the four friends and how well they interacted with each other. There are heavy undertones of romance, jealously, and betrayal that seeks to explain their actions and bring a sort of edge to the story. An excellent job by Kathleen Peacock....i'm definitely on board for book 2 and what adventures that would bring.
"Kathleen Peacock brings out a masterpiece with all the appropriate chills of the paranormalia mixed with reality"