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Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Book Review: Witches of East End by Melissa De La Cruz

Reading Level: Adult
Publication Date: June 21, 2011
Pages: 272
Series: 1st in a series
Acquisition: received and ARC at BEA 2011

Summary:
From the author of the highly addictive and bestselling Blue Bloods series, with almost 3 million copies sold, comes a new novel, Melissa de la Cruz's first for adults, featuring a family of formidable and beguiling witches.
The three Beauchamp women--Joanna and her daughters Freya and Ingrid--live in North Hampton, out on the tip of Long Island. Their beautiful, mist-shrouded town seems almost stuck in time, and all three women lead seemingly quiet, uneventful existences. But they are harboring a mighty secret--they are powerful witches banned from using their magic. Joanna can resurrect people from the dead and heal the most serious of injuries. Ingrid, her bookish daughter, has the ability to predict the future and weave knots that can solve anything from infertility to infidelity. And finally, there's Freya, the wild child, who has a charm or a potion that can cure most any heartache.
For centuries, all three women have been forced to suppress their abilities. But then Freya, who is about to get married to the wealthy and mysterious Bran Gardiner, finds that her increasingly complicated romantic life makes it more difficult than ever to hide her secret. Soon Ingrid and Joanna confront similar dilemmas, and the Beauchamp women realize they can no longer conceal their true selves. They unearth their wands from the attic, dust off their broomsticks, and begin casting spells on the townspeople. It all seems like a bit of good-natured, innocent magic, but then mysterious, violent attacks begin to plague the town. When a young girl disappears over the Fourth of July weekend, they realize it's time to uncover who and what dark forces are working against them.
With a brand-new cast of characters, a fascinating and fresh world to discover, and a few surprise appearances from some of the Blue Blood fan favorites, this is a page-turning, deliciously fun, magical summer read fraught with love affairs, witchcraft, and an unforgettable battle between good and evil. (from Goodreads)

My thoughts:
Not sure how I feel about this one. I really enjoyed the story and I really liked the characters. But...I'm not quite sure I like how all the pieces fit together. And, Melissa made fun of Long Island in the first chapter so...you know...I shouldn't like the book on principle. Kidding! I actually did enjoy reading this one. I just didn't love it.

I guess the one word I could use to describe how I felt after reading Witches of East End is unsatisfied. There is so much back story to these characters. Tons of myth and legend surrounding their lives of the Beauchamp Family but I wish, as a reader, I was given more. Some passages read like a steamy romance, some like a common contemporary and I would have rather seen more of the mystery and the myth.

Joanna, Freya and Ingrid have powers and abilities beyond what anyone could imagine. They can't use these abilities but that doesn't change who they are. For such powerful people, their lives are pretty boring. It has to be, it is said. They can't risk defying the ban and using their magic. Very bad things would happen, so we are told. But then they do break the ban. They do use their magic. In silly ways sometimes. And I kept waiting for the big bad things to start happening and...nothing.

There is a climatic to the story but it's more so a solving of the mystery rather then an all out dramatic bam of a ending. The ending did have a few twists and turns - most throw in a little fast - but by the last page, the story felt flat to me.

I haven't read Melissa's Blue Blood series but fans of her YA books might gleam more into the world of The Beauchamp family then I did.

Witches of East End is marketed as an adult novel. I can see why - the age of the characters, the setting and the few instances of sex are on par with the adult label. But I can see older teens and adult YA lovers really liking this book.

Aside from my little issues with bits and pieces of the story, overall, I did enjoy reading Witches of East End. While reading, I was thinking that my review would hold a solid 4 Star rating. Unfortunately the page and a half of Epilogue did me in. The story was over, or so I believed. And really, that last page or so? It seems like sequel fodder. I didn't enjoy it and I can see where book 2 might be heading and I'm not sure I'm going  to enjoy that either. We'll see though. I probably will pick up the sequel when it comes out because I do very much enjoy Melissa's writing style and Joanna, Freya and Ingrid have kind of won me over :)

Overall Rating:
3 / 5 Stars

Books in The Beauchamp Family Series:
#0 Witches 101: A Witches of East End Primer
#1 Witches of East End

Linkage Love:
Hyperion
Author's Website
Goodreads

Tidbits:
**After writing this review I found Book 0 of the series- listed above. I'll definitely be reading this one! Goodreads says "In this primer, you' ll meet the three Beauchamp women - Joanna, Ingrid, and Freya - learn a little bit about their special powers, and even get some tips so you can cast a few spells of your own." I'm excited!

3 comments:

  1. The Blue Bloods series is a good one ^^ You should try it. As for this book being unsatisfiyng, well, I had a feeling xD

    ReplyDelete
  2. I'm not huge into adult books but I got this mainly because I really like Melissa de la Cruz. I hope I enjoy it! I love the name of the book 0! LOL. The primer. Haha.

    ReplyDelete



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