Saturday, March 30, 2013

A Witch's Way of Learning

"Or have I inherited something else from my forebears
--not magic, but madness?
There's a word for people who hear voices and see things,
and it's scizophrenia.
--Maya Gold, Spellbinding

Genre: YA Paranormal
Publisher: Scholastic Point, 272 pages
Publication Date: April 1st, 2013
Source: eARC provided by publisher via NetGalley

Goodreads Description

There's more than one way to be powerful . . .

It is during a routine school project that Abby Silva--sixteen and nearly friendless--makes a startling discovery: She is descended from women who were accused of witchcraft back in 1600s Salem. And when Abby visits nearby Salem, strange, inexplicable events start to unfold. Objects move when she wills them to. Candles burst into sudden flame. And an ancient spellbook somehow winds up in her possession.

Trying to harness her newfound power, Abby concocts a love potion to win over her longtime crush--and exact revenge upon his cruel, bullying girlfriend. But old magic is not to be trifled with. Soon, Abby is thrust headlong into a world of hexes, secrets, and danger. And then there's Rem Anders, the beautiful, mysterious Salem boy who seems to know more about Abby than he first lets on.

A reckoning is coming, and Abby will have to make sense of her history--and her heart--before she can face the powerful truth.

My Thoughts

I've been looking for a good witch story for awhile now and when I saw this on NetGalley it sounded pretty good, kinda right on track with what I was looking for...and it was good. Not fantastic and drop everything right now but right in the middle. The book was fast-paced and definitely kept my attention. It was a quick read and I liked how the story moved and evolved and twisted.

Abby's character was very much like any other normal teenage girl just trying to find her place in the large scheme of things. She feels awkward and insecure and it doesn't help she has a longtime crush on her childhood friend, Travis, who is the hottest boy in school. Also enter his girlfriend aka Regina George and queen of the Plastics who has it out for Abby. I'm gonna get this out of the way now because it is my only real issue with this book. First, while Abby is head over heels for Travis and she thinks he is like, the bee's knees. The kid is dating somebody who is beyond mean and vicious. I can't get behind this infatuation because of this. If he's dating the mean girl and he is too stupid and blind to see who she really is, he is NOT worth your time. Sorry not sorry. AND my blood was literally (but actually figuratively) boiling reading about the bullying in this book. Megan (the girlfriend) and her sidekicks are not only verbally mean, they get physical. And NOTHING is done about it. Abby just takes it. What the eff?! As somebody who was picked on most of her childhood and teenage years (while it NEVER got physical) I just couldn't stand this. I mean, these girls were legit insane the stuff they did. I just couldn't take this part of the story. It seemed like the physical aspect was just too much. I didn't like it. And it is not because I don't believe this kind of bullying happens, unfortunately I know it does, but it just didn't seem to fit in linearly with the rest of the story. It was too deep of an issue that was never resolved while the rest of the story was more of a lighthearted affair. 

BESIDES, that I really did enjoy the story. I liked that Abby was a normal girl. Wanting to fit in, using her new magic powers to get the boy she likes to like her back. That all seemed very legit and real. Her problems were honest and I liked seeing her mature and work through not only her magical issues but her non-magical ones as well. Along her journey she meets Rem, a boy she is drawn to and she thinks can hear inside her head. I liked Rem. He was a solid character and you never really knew where his intentions were until the end. I liked the easygoing dynamic he and Abby had. 

The magical portion of the story centered around the Salem witch trials because Abby finds out she is an ancestor of a woman accused and killed during the trials. We get some details about the history of what went on but not a lot. I would have liked a little more witch lore but the story focused mostly on Abby and her reactions to what was happening to her. 

I liked the story overall. It was a quick and easy read. Doesn't focus too much on magic so if you aren't into heavy paranormal this might be a good stepping stone. Fun read, I'd recommend if you're into a little more younger YA or MG mood. 


  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  2. Hmm.. I think I would have the same issues you did with the bullying, that is just not ok! And yeah, if a pretty boy doesn't realise his girlfriend is a witch but with a b, he's definitely not worth your time!
    I'll put this on the maybe-pile because it does sounds nice, but there'd probably be some throwing of the book going on as well ;)

  3. If you're still looking for a good witch story, I recommend White Witch by Trish Milburn, I looooved that trilogy about a witch from an evil coven who breaks free. The history of the magic system all centers around Salem, so it was pretty awesome ;-)

    Anya @ On Starships and Dragonwings


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