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Friday, January 26, 2018

#Book #Review: 4 out of 5 stars for Bewitching by Alex Flinn @Alex_Flinn @harperteen

TITLE: Bewitching
SERIES: Kendra Chronicles, Book #2
AUTHOR: Alex Flinn
PUBLICATION DATE: February 14, 2012
FORMAT: Hardcover
LENGTH: 338 pages
GENRE: Young Adult, Fantasy/Fairy Tales
ISBN: 9780062024145
Kendra Hilferty, the witch who curses Kyle Kingsbury in Beastly, tells about her immortal existence-how she discovered she was a witch and the various ways she has used her powers to help people throughout the centuries. (Unfortunately her attempts have often backfired.) As it turns out, Kendra has actually had a hand in "Hansel and Gretel," "The Princess and the Pea," and "The Little Mermaid"-but these are not the fairy tales you think you know! Kendra's reminiscences are wrapped around a real-time version of "Cinderella," except the "ugly" stepsister is the good guy. With dark twists, hilarious turns, and unexpected endings, Bewitching is a contemporary read for fairy-tale lovers, fantasy fans, and anyone looking for more Alex Flinn.


I read the first book in this series, Beastly, in 2013 and immediately read the follow-up novella entitled Beastly: Lindy's Diary. I've really enjoyed this series, and Bewitching has reminded me just how much!

We were introduced to Kendra Hilferty in Beastly as the witch who cast that spell on Kyle, the rich jerk, and turned him into a beast. This book opens in 1666 in England, when the plague nearly killed off Kendra's entire family and their village. Kendra's younger brother, Charlie, was stricken with it as well and seemed destined to die, but Kendra visited the town's healer who was also rumored to be a witch which was dangerous in those times as people feared witches and hung or drowned them. The healer told Kendra that she also possessed a gift like her, and that she had untapped potential. The herbs that the healer gave Kendra to give to her brother didn't help, so she prayed and an energy passed from her body to her brother's as she prayed over him. She healed him, and she knew that they could not stay in the village because others knew that her brother had been on death's door and that she would be doomed if she was labelled a witch so they left the village. They came upon a gingerbread house in the woods...and then the Hansel and Gretel fairy tale is retold. 

I absolutely loved the first part of the book, which focused on Kendra's past. In the next part, we are introduced to a teenage girl named Emma whose whole world is about to change. Her step-father was previously married and had a daughter named Lisette and, with the passing of Lisette's mother, Lisette is now coming to live with her father and his family. Emma's mother is concerned that her husband will love Lisette more than his step-daughter, Emma, and she thinks the worst of Lisette. Meanwhile, Emma is excited to have a sister and hopes they will be the best of friends. It turns out that mother knows best, and Lisette is what you would call a bad seed. Where does Kendra fit into all this? Well, Kendra likes to help out where she can and thinks that Emma deserves her help.

The author then throws in a retelling of The Princess and the Pea, before returning to Emma's and Lisette's story. She diverts again from the main story by giving us a retelling of The Little Mermaid before finally returning to Emma's and Lisette's story.

This book started off as a 5-star read for me, with Kendra's history and past lives. While I did still really enjoy the rest of the book, I wished that the book would have entirely focused on Kendra's past. I still hope to learn more about her in the books to follow.


4 stars!! It was really good, and you should put it on your TBR list if you enjoy YA fantasy or fairy tale retellings.

This book qualifies as:
#3 for my 2018 Paranormal Reading Challenge
#1 for my 2018 Witches & Witchcraft Reading Challenge
#3 for my Science Fiction vs Fantasy Bingo 2018
#3 for my The 2018 Swords & Stars Reading Challenge
#1 for my Once Upon A Reading Challenge
Task #11 for my Goodreads Winter Scavenger Challenge: Northern Lights

1 comment:

  1. Ooh I am obsessed with fairytales lately. Add in witches and this one sounds like a great book! I am off to check it out :) Great review!

    Megan @ Ginger Mom & the Kindle Quest


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