Posts Categorized: witches

Classic MG Discussion: The Witches

Classic MG Discussion: The Witches

Wendy: Welcome to our discussion for Roald Dahl’s The Witches. This is the story of a boy named — um, this is where I realize the main character is unnamed! His grandmother charmingly calls him “my darling” often, but I’d never before realized he didn’t have a name. So let’s start again. This is the story of a boy who happens upon a gathering of witches (who despise children and want to wipe them off the face of the earth) while staying at a hotel in England with his Norwegian grandmother. It is a funny, sweet book that I’ve loved since I was little, so let’s begin! Layla: Woah, mind blown. Did not realize that child was unnamed either! Wendy: He’s given the name “Luke” in the movie, but yes, no name at all in the book. Layla: I also forgot his grandmother was Norwegian. I forgot a lot of this… Read more »

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Conversion: Review

Conversion: Review

I’m not entirely sure how I feel about this book. I didn’t know much of anything about this book when I started it, except that it had to do with the Salem Witch Trials. I like Salem. I like witches. I figured I would like this. Well, this was not what I expected, but that doesn’t mean I didn’t like it. Conversion is a story about friendship and the nature of the truth in both the present day and the past of Salem. It tackles a lot of stuff, and I think is for the most part successful. One thing I didn’t know going in is that there are two stories told in alternating chapters. The main one is set in a present-day private school for girls where a mysterious illness—called, catchily enough, the Mysterious Illness—has quickly spread. The story follows Colleen and her circle of friends as they navigate the… Read more »

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Trial by Fire: guest post + giveaway

Trial by Fire: guest post + giveaway

I love paranormal romances, but it’s rare to find one that hits all the right spots in combining fantastic magic-wielding, fun action scenes, nuanced characters with agency, and swoony romance. Trial by Fire by Josephine Angelini arrowed right into the bulls-eye, however, and Lily Proctor’s development from an allergy-ridden, insecure klutz into a young woman who embraces incredible power in an alternate universe is handled with just the right touch. Lily is so painfully awkward in the beginning–and so obviously in love with a guy who doesn’t appreciate her–that I was nervous about whether the transition would feel right, but I loved the way she comes into her own. This book also hit on two of my GoodReads shelves that don’t see nearly enough action: the hilarious books shelf and the crush-worthy boys shelf! That’s right, a guy you wanna make out with AND a story that keeps you laughing…. Read more »

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Half Bad: Review

Half Bad: Review

Well, I guess I can be excited because Half Bad taught me something new: I’m not a fan of second person present tense narration. The first 20 pages are written as such and I found myself incredibly distanced. I had to quickly skim ahead a bit to check that this did not continue throughout and, whew! Bullet dodged! We switch to first person present but, sadly, I didn’t find that much better. There is a lot of “I do this. Nothing happens. I feel this. Character appears. She performs action. I perform action.” No, literally. Just substitute in the sparse verbs and adjectives and that is how it reads. The writing style is very choppy and disjointed and only further served the distancing I initially felt. Also, I think that you should be aware that the first 40% of this book is flashback filling in on Nathan’s backstory leading up… Read more »

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The Fiery Heart (Bloodlines #4): review

The Fiery Heart (Bloodlines #4): review

Ready for Adrian to set your heart on fire? Although The Fiery Heart is narrated in POVs alternating between Sydney’s and Adrian’s perspectives, this is really Adrian’s story. While Sydney continues to forge a path for herself as a gifted Alchemist, Adrian’s struggle to live up to his potential while dealing with the side effects of his spirit magic are the driving force of this book. (Or at least, that’s the part I was flipping through pages and excited by.) It’s apparent that the Bloodlines series has become something of a vehicle for the author to explore some serious subjects, including eating disorders, body image, prejudice, drinking, addiction, and even bipolar mania and depression; some of those are addressed with more complexity than others, but it’s interesting to see them dealt with within the framework of a paranormal series. Sydney, filtered through Adrian’s eyes, is very appealing. There’s a softness… Read more »

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giveaway alert: Born Wicked ARC!

giveaway alert: Born Wicked ARC!

Have you seen the gorgeous cover for Jessica Spotswood’s Born Wicked? The raised lettering and rich colors are so beautiful! Here is the synopsis for this paranormal romance, which is the first in a planned trilogy releasing next month. A Great and Terrible Beauty meets Cassandra Clare in this spellbinding fantasy Everybody knows Cate Cahill and her sisters are eccentric. Too pretty, too reclusive, and far too educated for their own good. But the truth is even worse: they’re witches. And if their secret is discovered by the priests of the Brotherhood, it would mean an asylum, a prison ship—or an early grave. Before her mother died, Cate promised to protect her sisters. But with only six months left to choose between marriage and the Sisterhood, she might not be able to keep her word . . . especially after she finds her mother’s diary, uncovering a secret that could… Read more »

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Cold Kiss: review

Cold Kiss: review

Cold Kissby Amy Garvey How far would you go to save the person you loved most in the world? And what if he were already…dead? Wren’s boyfriend Danny died in a car accident before she had a chance to say goodbye. In a moment of grief, she brings him back from the dead with a powerful spell. But she soon realizes that the boy brought back is no longer quite the boy she loved. I was really impressed by many aspects of this novel. From the description, I expected to find a typical YA paranormal romance, but was pleasantly surprised to find that the author spends a great deal of time reflecting on love, loss, grief, and responsibility. She skillfully sketches out the close relationship between Danny and Wren, and specifically shows us what an adorable boyfriend and great person he was. So it’s all too easy to feel sympathy… Read more »

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