Title: Witches of East End
Author: Melissa de la Cruz
Release Date: June 21, 2011
Out in North Hampton live three unique women, Joanna Beauchamp and her daughters Freya and Ingrid. They are witches, powerful, but banned from openly practicing magic. Not until each of them are presented with certain situations do they break out their wands and start casting spells again, bringing to life their small town. Then the darkness comes, and the sickness, and the missing girl, and the Beauchamp women realize it's time to uncover what dark forces have come to their small town hidden in the mist.
This book has what I love about Melissa de la Cruz books: magic, secrets, powerful but flawed characters, New York class and style, and hidden romances. It's another exciting book, with hints of her Blue Bloods series. Characters like Freya and Ingrid and Joanna help this book stand on its own, but it's still half-related to its well-established and well-loved Blue Bloods cousins.
This is not a YA book, per se. The characters are not teenagers, but I wouldn't be surprised if the majority of readers of this book have drifted over from Melissa's YA series. It's still what I've come to expect from a Melissa novel: a blend of character and plot driven with characters in conflict and aren't sure what they really want (or who, Freya) and events happening that slowly change the world around them (the dead birds and the sickness).
I loved the inclusion of (maybe spoiler) Norse mythology (like you couldn't see it with a name like Freya or Ingrid). I like tweaks and spins on mythology in general, it explains why I loved Aimée Carter's The Goddess Test so much (Greek mythology) and why I'm excited to read Tera Lynn Childs' Sweet Venom (also Greek mythology). It's another idea that sets Witches of East End apart from Blue Bloods, that it's not all blue blood-angel-reincarnated soul-vampires.
Such a fun, interesting, mysterious summer read. I couldn't help but think of summer as I read this. They're at the beach, it's New York, Freya is bubbly and sexy and fun. And I liked Ingrid, too, and not just because she's a librarian. She wants to help people. I hope in the next book she gets kissed as much as Freya did in this book. ;)
(I received this book from HarperCollinsCanada for the intent to review it. I haven't received any sort of compensation for my time, but I do appreciate them sending it express overnight to me.)