Hannah Walsh just wants a normal life. It’s her senior year, so she should be focusing on classes, hanging out with her best friend, and flirting with her new girlfriend, Morgan. But it turns out surviving a murderous Witch Hunter doesn’t exactly qualify as a summer vacation, and now the rest of the Hunters seem more intent on destroying her magic than ever.
Hannah kind of got on my nerves for the majority of this book. I just feel like she didn’t learn from any of her mistakes from the previous book in this duology. Letting her emotions get the better of her and making rash decisions that end up not helping her in any of the situations she gets herself into. Also the fact that she is so dismissive of her mother after just loosing her dad and focusing so much on getting revenge for his murder rather than trying to deal with the emotions she is obviously trying to smother down resulting in her magic being temperamental.
I liked the fact that we actually get an explanation about what happened in New York with those casters and the blood witch which caused Hannah and Veronica to break up. Also the fact that this was the scenario that set off the chain of events was a nice surprise and tied everything together which was gratifying. It’s just the fact that Hannah always thinks that she is the cause for everything, if she didn’t follow Veronica that day in New York none of this would of happened and just takes all the guilt and blame for it when I feel like it just wasn’t the case at all. I enjoyed how Veronica called her out on not trying to heal the emotional trauma that they went through and just continued to throw herself into danger unnecessarily.
I feel like the plot does evolve and the stakes definitely got higher in this instalment. It was fast paced and it just felt like we were always on the move with Hannah. But again I just wish we would of got to see more of an insight into the coven and the lessons Hannah gets with her grandmother. I liked that we see how the difference between the clans and how their magic works and the way they merge with each other when they all work together.
I originally gave this book a three but upon reflection I wasn’t all that impressed or surprised throughout this book. Hannah just felt a little too juvenile and even though I was interested in what was happening I just felt like this story could of made so much more of an impact on me if the build up was a little more slower. It felt a little rushed in the end and is kind of forgettable.
⭐️2/5 stars Just ok, didn’t love it.
Linus Baker leads a quiet, solitary life. At forty, he lives in a tiny house with a devious cat and his old records. As a Case Worker at the Department in Charge Of Magical Youth, he spends his days overseeing the well-being of children in government-sanctioned orphanages. When Linus is unexpectedly summoned by Extremely Upper Management he’s given a curious and highly classified assignment: travel to Marsyas Island Orphanage, where six dangerous children reside: a gnome, a sprite, a wyvern, an unidentifiable green blob, a were-Pomeranian, and the Antichrist. Linus must set aside his fears and determine whether or not they’re likely to bring about the end of days.
I really liked and appreciated Linus’s character. He is so realistic and straightforward with everything that he does, he realises his life might not be what he envisioned but he is comfortable and accepts it. But the evolution and growth he shows over the course of the plot was wonderful to read and to see him open up and develop feelings for not only Arthur but all of the kids was soo gratifying and beautiful.
I also liked the fact that we get a lot of information about each of the other characters and how they came to be on Marsyas Island. How they have been treated in the past and just how resilient and strong each of these children are by moving on and embracing the family they have now. Each one of them are so distinct and distinguishable and I loved the fact that we get enough interaction with all of them for me to form a bond and be fully invested.
Arthur I was curious about from the start because of how little we knew about him from his file. I had a feeling that there was something more to him than what we were shown because of how dedicated he was to keeping the children safe. There are definitely clues given throughout the book but I had no idea what it was. I liked the banter between him and Linus and to see how their relationship blossoms was just wholesome and lovely.
Overall l didn’t think I was that invested or even really affected by this book until Linus comes back and asks them if he can stay. That whole monologue really touched me and that’s when everything really just came together. This wasn’t anything spectacular or ground-breaking I feel but its more about the way it makes you feel. It’s about growth, acceptance, embracing yourself and coming to terms with your past trauma and moving on. This was a fantastic, quick, wholesome read that I would recommend to everyone!
⭐️5/5 I definitely cried lol
The Buzzword Readathon is a monthly readathon created by BooksandLala on booktube. It’s run the first week of each month (1st through 7th) with each month having a designated word/word theme and you have a week to read as many books as you like with that word in the title. You can however use it as a year long readathon and read just ONE book each month featuring the monthly buzzword until you complete the whole challenge which is what I am going to do again this the year.
With January you can pick a book with any of the 5W1H (who, what, where, when, why, how) and my options are:
Hannah’s a witch, but not the kind you’re thinking of. She’s the real deal, an Elemental with the power to control fire, earth, water, and air. But even though she lives in Salem, Massachusetts, her magic is a secret she has to keep to herself. Hannah will have to test the limits of her power if she’s going to save her coven and get the girl, especially when the attacks on Salem’s witches become deadlier by the day.
Hannah’s character was definitely interesting to read from. She’s still very much coming to terms with her break up with Veronica and I feel like her feelings and reactions to her were very realistic and in line with her age. She definitely goes through a lot emotionally throughout the course of the storyline and that definitely made me feel more sympathetic and connected to her. But overall I didn’t find her to be particularly likeable.
Veronica I didn’t like at all. I thought she was just playing with Hannah’s emotions all throughout the story and just kept dismissing her feelings and trying to force her to take her back. Maybe if this was a dual perspective and we see things from Veronica’s point of view I might have developed more of a connection to her but I was just mostly indifferent to her.
I would of loved if we delved more into the training in regards to Hannah’s abilities. She said various times in the plot that they have weekly training sessions with their high priestess which we don’t get to see that I would of loved to read and see. In general we don’t get to see quite as much magic as what I would of liked. I was just expecting it to be more focused on the witchcraft and not so much on the mystery behind the blood witch.
Overall I was definitely surprised with the direction the story went. I appreciated how we see Hannah just be a normal teenager even though there is so much going on in her life that she has to keep secret from everyone else in her life other than Veronica. I didn’t see any of the twists coming and there was an underlying feeling of urgency woven throughout the plot that kept me wanting to read more. The pacing was just very fast and it was just one thing after another that was happening which in the end I enjoyed however I would of liked to be shown more about the witches and their abilities rather than told.
⭐️3/5 stars A solid witchy, entertaining story!
*SOME SPOILERS AHEAD*
The distrust between them has been overcome and now Ophelia and Thorn love each other passionately. However, they must keep their love hidden. Only in this way can they continue their journeys toward an understanding of the indecipherable code of God and the truth behind the mysterious figure of the Other, whose devastating power continues to bring down entire pieces of arks, plunging thousands of innocents into the void.
Ophelia’s journey to the truth about who the other is was really dragged out throughout the course of this book. I just felt like not a lot happens throughout the course of the storyline even though the book was over 500 pages. We are mainly focused on Babel again and even though we discover more about the Ark and venture into the Observatory we are mainly in Ophelia’s head struggling to figure out how to get to the horn of plenty and who the other is.
We get a few chapters from Victoria’s perspective that I didn’t quite understand. What were the reasons for having them? Sure we get to see the infamous LandmArk and see the interactions between Archibald, Janus and God but I was left more confused than anything. Why was Victoria able to see these things, how did she come to be on the Other side and how did she end up at the bottom of the well for Thorn to find.
I struggled more than anything with a lot of the terminology in this book. I understand that its a translated book but a lot of the phrases of what was happening to Ophelia at the Observatory just didn’t register with me. The concept of the crystallisation creating the echoes and having these revelational moments just went over my head and I couldn’t comprehend what was happening.
I think what was the issue is that this book really veered so far away from where I was envisioning the story to go and I was disappointed with how it ended. The fact that Thorn gets stuck in the Other place and we don’t get to see him and Ophelia truly get to live in peace as husband and wife really irritates me after being kept apart or having to pretend they didn’t have feelings for each other this whole time.
This was definitely my least favourite book in this series. I wasn’t all that invested or interested in the direction the plot was going and it took me a while to get through it. If this wasn’t the last book in the series and me being a completionist I probably would of DNF’d it at 30%.
⭐️2/5 stars I’m just disappointed and underwhelmed.