The Babysitter’s Coven: Review

Thank you to Delacorte Press and NetGalley for the chance to review this title ahead of its release date.

Wow. This book was just what I needed. Witty writing, with a magical plot-line and a protagonist you can cheer for to the very end. I just came off reading a highly disappointing anticipated read, and I have to be honest, my hope in books plummeted a bit. But thanks to this delightful, witchy read, hope has been renewed.

What’s it about?

Esme is a seventeen-year-old babysitter from a complicated home. Her mother was put into a mental hospital when she was young, and her father doesn’t really jump at the chance to talk about it. Along with her best friend and fellow fashionista, Janis, they form a babysitter’s club which is really just them browsing the internet and watching movies. Weirdo things start happening when a new girl named Cassandra and her hot brother show up. Suddenly, Esme finds herself in an entirely different club, and it has nothing to do with changing diapers.

What I loved: Esme’s voice. Her narration does a colossal justice to YA everywhere. It mixes in a sometimes cynical girl who loves movies and clothes and her friends and is entirely awkward in front of her crush. It was so fun reading her quirkiness. And I laughed out loud so many times. When a book can do that to me, I know it’s going to be good.

The story was light-hearted and went ways I couldn’t even imagine. I’ve never watched an episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer so sue me, but It is inspired by it, and from other reviews, I hear it takes a few notes from the show as well.

I judge a book by how fast I get ready for bed to lie down and read. This one had me skipping skincare routines so that I could continue reading. It’s a quick, spooky romp through the head of a girl who is just trying to navigate life but has to fight evil monsters instead.

The only thing that did irk me was the lack of CALLING THE COPS thing when things happened. I get it, for plot’s sake, they had to deal on their own, but being the mother-bear inside of me was cursing them out for not enlisting the adults. ARGH.

I’m hoping for redemption and a real love interest in the next one. I cannot wait to take Esme, Cassandra, and Janis and just squeeze them and tell them things will be all right if you stick together, darn it.

Kate Williams has made a fan out of me.

Treason of Thorns: Review

352 pages Expected publication: September 10th 2019 by HarperTeen

Thank you to HarperTeen and Edelweiss who continue to trust me with their books.

Last summer I had the chance to read THE LIGHT BETWEEN WORLDS while on vacation in the UK. I was so enthralled by it that I rushed through touring the sights in London and Scotland just so I could go back to the Airbnb to read it. I couldn’t wait to get back home to review it. After, I became a lifelong fan of Laura Weymouth. If you have a chance, add her on Twitter. She is the sweetest author I have ever had the opportunity to converse with on social media!

I don’t know how she does it, by Laura takes us into a world where a girl is devoted to a magical house in England. After the father was accused of treason and sentenced to house arrest, Violet was sent away only to return some years later after the caretaker’s death. When she arrives, she finds the house in disrepair. After being told she’s to “cure” the house in a specific timeframe, Violet realizes the depth of her devotion to the sentient building and to those she loves. With sweeping emotional turmoil, Violet navigates the world of secrets her father had built up and first love to discover that her fate is not sealed and that she can be whatever she wants to be, despite the promises she made.

This premise is unique in that it brings us to a world built entirely around this house, that seemingly has emotions of its own. Violet’s devotion borders on obsession. She almost loses sight of what is truly important, and I think, at least to me, that s the lesson I took from it. This may not be what Laura intended, but we all see stories differently and relate to them in a way that coincides with our own emotions in real life. It is also a testament to finding our place in the world, and just like in THE LIGHT BETWEEN WORLDS, Violet pours her heart and soul into what she loves and what she believes will ultimately make her happy.

Upon asking Laura what her inspiration for the story was, she told me that it was partly based on The Crawley family and their devotion to their home in DOWNTON ABBEY. She sprinkled in some magic and TREASON OF THORNS came to be. Part of me can see that, and another part was reminded of THE HAUNTING OF HILLHOUSE (the show on Netflix) and how these people were drawn to this house that would or would not ultimately decide their fate. Though not as horrific as the show, TREASON OF THORNS gave me a gothic feel. It was beautifully written (as always) and drew me in from page one. I cannot express how much I adore Laura’s writing, but I know she will always be one of my favorites.