Book Review

ARC Book Review: Wild is the Witch by Rachel Griffin

Rating: ★★★★
Audience: YA Paranormal Romance
Length: 320 pages
Author: Rachel Griffin
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Release Date: August 2nd, 2022
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

When eighteen-year-old witch Iris Gray accidentally enacts a curse that could have dire consequences, she must team up with a boy who hates witches to make sure her magic isn’t unleashed on the world.

Iris Gray knows witches aren’t welcome in most towns. When she was forced to leave her last home, she left behind a father who was no longer willing to start over. And while the Witches’ Council was lenient in their punishment, Iris knows they’re keeping tabs on her. Now settled in Washington, Iris never lets anyone see who she really is; instead, she vents her frustrations by writing curses she never intends to cast. Otherwise, she spends her days at the wildlife refuge which would be the perfect job if not for Pike Alder, the witch-hating aspiring ornithologist who interns with them.

Iris concocts the perfect curse for Pike: one that will turn him into a witch. But just as she’s about to dispel it, a bird swoops down and steals the curse before flying away. If the bird dies, the curse will be unleashed―and the bird is a powerful amplifier, and unleashing the curse would turn not just Pike, but everyone in the region, into a witch.

New witches have no idea how to control their magic and the consequences would be dire. And the Witches’ Council does not look kindly on multiple offenses; if they found out, Iris could be stripped of her magic for good. Iris begs Pike to help her track the bird, and they set out on a trek through the Pacific Northwest looking for a single bird that could destroy everything. 

Thank you to the publisher and Netgalley for an audio ARC.

TAKE ME TO THE WILDS.

I was craving a witchy read and this delivered. Wow do I love how atmospheric and moody Griffin is able to create in a setting. I felt like I was out in the wood with Iris and Pike. The vibes are all there to bring about the best things in paranormal reads.

A ridiculous meddling owl caused all sorts of problems leading to an adventure that brought our couple together. There were solid loath to love nods and I definitely felt the initial animosity between Iris and Pike. I liked the development of their relationship and the trust they formed together. And even when things fell apart the admittance of a connection had my heart swelling.

It’s a very fast paced read with the big focus on Iris righting her wrongs. The tumultuous events lead to declarations of feelings and powerful magical moments. I liked the choices made for the story including how the curse was resolved and the relationships in general. There’s great exploration of forgiveness and working through grief too.

All in all, a vivid read filled with perseverance and hope that the sun really will rise in the morning. I love the sense of learning to let go and let be and the many aspects of growing up.

Audiobook notes: I have none! I LOVED the audio and the narration. It was well done and definitely enhanced the story for me.

Overall audience notes:

  • YA Paranormal Romance
  • Language: a little
  • Romance: make-outs
  • Violence: medium
  • Trigger/Content Warnings: parental divorce mentioned, PTSD & trauma, anxiety, panic attacks, blood & injury depiction, cancer mentioned, fire, animal death and injury

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Book Review

Book Review: The Nature of Witches by Rachel Griffin

Rating: ☆☆☆☆
Audience: YA Paranormal
Length: 384 pages
Author: Rachel Griffin
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Release Date: June 1st, 2021
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

For centuries, witches have maintained the climate, their power from the sun peaking in the season of their birth. But now their control is faltering as the atmosphere becomes more erratic. All hope lies with Clara, an Everwitch whose rare magic is tied to every season.

In Autumn, Clara wants nothing to do with her power. It’s wild and volatile, and the price of her magic―losing the ones she loves―is too high, despite the need to control the increasingly dangerous weather.

In Winter, the world is on the precipice of disaster. Fires burn, storms rage, and Clara accepts that she’s the only one who can make a difference.

In Spring, she falls for Sang, the witch training her. As her magic grows, so do her feelings, until she’s terrified Sang will be the next one she loses.

In Summer, Clara must choose between her power and her happiness, her duty and the people she loves… before she loses Sang, her magic, and thrusts the world into chaos.

Practical Magic meets Twister in this debut contemporary fantasy standalone about heartbreaking power, the terror of our collapsing atmosphere, and the ways we unknowingly change our fate.

WONDERFUL DEBUT.

I enjoyed this so dang much!

First off, the romance was so sweet. Like sugary syrup sweet. I couldn’t get enough of Clara and Sang together. There was passion and new experiences. Learning to lean on each other and the support Sang gave Clara was off the charts. Some swoony kissing scenes that really nailed this relationship for me.

I love the character growth in Clara over the year. She had to work through a lot of emotions and truths she had lead herself to believe for too long. Clara was pushed outside of her comfort zone and forced to face past relationships and trials too. By the end she had made some beautiful strides in owning her magic and herself.

There was a little bit of a repetitive nature to the story. Each season Clara would tackle a rogue weather pattern and then do that again and again. They did push Clara’s character forward, but it became extremely formulaic for me. And something that didn’t affect my rating, but that I did struggle with was how high my anxiety got reading this. Since climate change is front and center it caused my dooms-day anxiety to spike and made it tough to read at times (and this was a me thing, but wanted to mention to others who might be wary too).

I’m really excited to see what Griffin writes next. This was a witch book that I adored, and those are hard to come by for me.

Overall Audience Notes:

  • YA Paranormal
  • Language: a little
  • Romance: kisses to closed door
  • Violence: minor physical altercations
  • Trigger/Content Warnings: grief and loss depiction, death of a parent and best friend, extreme weather patterns

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Book Review

Book Review: Wrapping Up (Wayfair Witches #5) by A.A. Albright

Rating: ☆☆☆☆
Audience: Paranormal Cozy Mystery
Length: 215 pages
Author: A.A. Albright
Publisher: Self-published
Release Date: December 22nd, 2017
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

It’s the most wonderful time of the year – or at least it would be, if one of the most popular witches in Riddler’s Cove hadn’t just been murdered.

When Winnie Wywood is found, strangled by festive ribbon and wrapped up like a present, there are two main suspects.

Suspect number one is the father of Wanda’s boyfriend, which might make the holiday period ever so slightly awkward.

Suspect number two is a woman who seems all too keen to admit to the murder.

Wanda hopes to track down the culprit before the Winter Solstice celebrations get underway. But there might be a little more to worry about than who killed Winnie.

A WINTER MYSTERY.

Why yes, I did finish this book in less than 24 hours because I didn’t want to put it down.

So much is happening in so few pages y’all! I didn’t know how it was all leading up until the mystery started being unraveled. I love how with each mystery the larger plot of the entire series keeps unfurling. I’m not sure where that’s quite leading to, but I am definitely here for the ride. I can’t believe I’m almost to the halfway point [There’s 11 books + 2 side stories].

This one made a few things clearer in regards to Wanda and her love life. And I am totally on board which I feel is why I’m still invested in this stories. It’s kind of hit or miss in that department (as it always is with ships).

I love how themed this was with Christmas and the Winter Solstice. It made it playful and fun even if it did have its usual dash of murder. I’m smitten with these lovable characters and can’t wait to see what happens next.

Overall audience notes:

  • Paranormal cozy mystery
  • Language: none
  • Romance: kisses
  • Violence: murder

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Book Review

Book Review: Bottling It (Wayfair Witches #1) by A.A. Albright

Rating: ☆☆☆☆
Audience: Paranormal Cozy Mystery
Length: 215 pages
Author: A.A. Albright
Publisher: Self-published
Release Date: October 9th, 2017
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

Wanda Wayfair is a bit of a late starter.

At almost twenty-one she still hasn’t received her magical powers, and she’s running out of time. But that doesn’t bother Wanda. Much. Not when she can spend all of her time in the human world and pretend that her coven doesn’t exist. But when Wanda takes a job at Berrys’ Bottlers, working with the handsome Will Berry and his unpleasant Aunt Alice, she soon realises that she’s a lot closer to the magical world than she thought.

All over Dublin, humans are murdering witches. When asked why, all they’ll say is, ‘I dunno why I done it.’ But Wanda thinks she does know why they’ve done it – and hopefully she’ll receive her power in time to help her coven discover the truth.

DIVING INTO COZY MYSTERIES.

I’m not sure if anything I’ve ever read has qualified as a cozy mystery. This I believe does! And I found it to be something I’d love to read more of.

This was funny, short, and so very quirky. I liked Wanda as the main character and found her likable and someone I wanted to be friends with. I snickered and found myself smiling multiple times over the ridiculousness of the story, but also realizing how much I was enjoying it.

A very fast read (200ish) pages and plenty was packed in! There’s quite a few books so I’m definitely interested in seeing how these continue. I spied the beginnings of a budding romance, and many more mysteries to solve. I love how quick this opener was and how easy it made me want to know more about the Wayfair Witches.

Overall audience notes:

  • Paranormal cozy mystery
  • Language: very little, light
  • Romance: hugs
  • Violence: murder; nothing overly bloody/gory; kidnapping

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