Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Review: The Near Witch by Victoria Schwab

The Near Witch by Victoria Schwab

Pages: 288
Publisher: Hyperion Books
Published: August 2nd, 2011
IBSN: 9781423137870

The Near Witch is only an old story told to frighten children.

If the wind calls at night, you must not listen. The wind is lonely, and always looking for company. 
And there are no strangers in the town of Near.

These are the truths that Lexi has heard all her life.
But when an actual stranger—a boy who seems to fade like smoke—appears outside her home on the moor at night, she knows that at least one of these sayings is no longer true.
The next night, the children of Near start disappearing from their beds, and the mysterious boy falls under suspicion. Still, he insists on helping Lexi search for them. Something tells her she can trust him.
As the hunt for the children intensifies, so does Lexi’s need to know—about the witch that just might be more than a bedtime story, about the wind that seems to speak through the walls at night, and about the history of this nameless boy.

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The Near Witch is Victoria Schwab's remarkable debut. It combines fantasy elements with romance and lore, to a backdrop of a restrictive and narrow-minded village.

I admired Lexi as a character. She did what she had to do, and didn't let anyone stand in her way. The secondary characters were realistic and had depth. I totally fell in love with Cole. His anguish over his tragic past had a huge affect on his character. I felt sympathetic towards him.

The plot was clever and constantly twisting. I could never see what was going to happen next.

The writing style was beautiful and poetic and had a quality to it that made it so easy to read. It had an exquisite flow to it.

The Near Witch was a relatively short, unique, stand-alone novel that was thoroughly entertaining with likeable characters. My definition of a great novel.

I give The Near Witch a 4 out of 5. I definitely look forward to Victoria Schwab's future books!