Author: Jessica Spotswood
Publisher: Putnam Juvenile
Date: Now available
My grade: A+
Everybody knows Cate Cahill and her sisters are eccentric. Too pretty, too reclusive, and far too educated for their own good. But the truth is even worse: they’re witches. And if their secret is discovered by the priests of the Brotherhood, it would mean an asylum, a prison ship—or an early grave.
Before her mother died, Cate promised to protect her sisters. But with only six months left to choose between marriage and the Sisterhood, she might not be able to keep her word... especially after she finds her mother’s diary, uncovering a secret that could spell her family’s destruction. Desperate to find alternatives to their fate, Cate starts scouring banned books and questioning rebellious new friends, all while juggling tea parties, shocking marriage proposals, and a forbidden romance with the completely unsuitable Finn Belastra.
If what her mother wrote is true, the Cahill girls aren’t safe. Not from the Brotherhood, the Sisterhood—not even from each other. (Cover and description from www.goodreads.com)
Why did I wait so long to read this?? Stupid, stupid, stupid!!!
I LOVE the original cover for this book. The paperback one is not bad either, but there is something about that first cover with the girl in the dress looking back at the reader that just grabbed me. The flowers are a nice touch as well. The title is catchy and made me want to pick up the book right away. I approve!
What’s the Story?
If you hear a pounding noise, that’s the sound of me beating my own ass for not reading this book sooner. I cannot believe just how good this book was! It’s phenomenal. Seriously, one of the best books I’ve ever read.
This book has an outstanding premise. Imagine that Harry Potter got together with The Hunger Games and had a love child. That would be this book. Of course, it also inherited just a few traits from its great aunt The Handmaid’s Tale. Here’s the deal-- it is the late 19th century. There are real witches in the world. The Salem Witch trials really happened, but they were caused by people rebelling against the real witches. The Brotherhood took over New England and it is still under Puritan rule. Witches are in hiding and women are extremely oppressed. People are thrown in prison for immorality and girls suspected of witchcraft or other immoral acts are also put into an insane asylum.
This is the world that the book takes place in and I have to say that Spotswood’s world-building is without rival. For that reason, the first few chapters are a little slow, but it was totally worth it because once the world was established, then the action could start with little need for explanation. So, get through the exposition, and then the novel really takes off!
I have to say that at first, I was skeptical of Cate as a main character. It took me a while to warm up to her, but soon, it was easy to see that she was just a girl who had waaaaay too much responsibility in a world that just doesn’t care about girls. After a while, I grew to love her and I would totally be her BFF. I think she needs someone to have a sleepover and braid her hair. Really, all of the girls do. Tess doesn’t really get a lot of attention in this book and at first, I liked Maura, but I started to dislike her at the end.
The love triangle is not really a love triangle because it becomes pretty apparent early on that only one of these “love” interests even has a shot with Cate. Still, some of the scenes are totally swoon-worthy. There’s a scene where Paul reaches down and grabs her wrist and kisses it on the inside. The way that scene is written totally gave me that butterflies in the stomach feeling and no one was even copping a feel, peeps! ::fans self:: And you will thank me when you get to the scene with the feathers!!! (way better than the Breaking Dawn feather fiasco, for sure!) The sexual tension in this book is incredible, especially given the strict Puritan laws in this world. Jessica is hitting us with her best swoon here, folks.
This book was amazing. I’ve read some pretty good books this year, but this one is up at the top. I think this may be the best paranormal I’ve read so far in 2013 and I have a feeling that this series is going to end up in my top 10 of all time list. Don’t be stupid like me. Go read this book ASAP. Your husband, kids, boyfriends, parents etc. may not thank you, but you will definitely thank yourself! And it won’t hurt them to do everything for a day or two.
Witch Hunt by The Church
The Angels Are Weeping by Nox Arcana
Little Sister by Siouxsie and the Banshees
Send Me to the Moon by Sara Bareilles
Can’t Help Falling in Love by Ingrid Michaelson
All I Know by Five for Fighting
Life Is Beautiful by The Icarus Account
The Final Grade
My final grade for this book is an A+. I was so happy when I reached the end of this book and realized I had the next one waiting. This is going to be one of my favorite series, I know it.