Sunday, 9 October 2011

Book Review - The Near Witch by Victoria Schwab

The Near Witch by Victoria Schwab
Publisher: Hyperion Books
Release Date: 2nd August 2011
Genre: Young Adult

Summary (Goodreads):
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.
For some reason I had it in my head that this book was a contemporary paranormal book, so it threw me a bit when I started it to find it's historical, but I feel that made the book so much better. I love historical fiction anyway, but it's nice to read something that doesn't have all the mod-cons and teenagers worrying over shallow things.

This story was beautifully crafted, like every sentence was thought about before Schwab put it down. The creepiness was just the right amount and you could almost imagine the Near Witch story being real with it being told to children through the generations within the town.

The characters were like you could really imagine them existing at the time. They were really well-rounded with such different personalities and flaws. I loved the protagonist, Lexi- she was so strong and never gave in to anyone, even when it meant she would  be in serious trouble. I wasn't sure about the strange boy, I didn't warm to him, but even he was fantastically created.

I highly recommend this to anyone who loves a good storytelling, just like they used to be told.

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