Collecting Dust On the Bookshelf
Back in August of 2020, I found myself wandering the aisles of Barnes and Noble. There I found two books of interest including A Witch in Time and Nordic Tales: Folktales from Norway, Sweden, Norway, Iceland and Denmark.
As I held the books in my hands, I knew I needed to get one more because who doesn't like odd numbers. I had already grabbed a story about witches and as the nostalgia of my early preteen days of staying up to the wee hours of the morning reading tales about magic had already taken ahold, I decided to grab for another, The Witch's Kind.
With October just around the corner, I knew I would quickly read through the magical tales, but suddenly October came and went and now it's been 2 years since I first laid eyes on The Witch's Kind. Time has gotten away from me, but I'm not upset with this fact. Instead, I'm glad to have given myself time to read the book as it can now shine bright during our Spooky Month.
Overview of The Witch's Kind
Barrie Anne Sweet is ready to enjoy her life on her little farm after experiencing hard times during the war. But one evening, after seeing a bright light fade into the water's depths, her life is changed forever when her beloved dog drags home a newborn infant, who, at closer look, is different than meets the eye. What are the government men searching for who come pounding on her doorstep? What does Aunt Charolette's premonitions mean? And why can't Barrie's past stay in the past?
The Cons of The Witch's Kind
· Character Names
This story is set in the 1940's which means many uncommon names then we see nowadays. But the main character's name being Barrie Anne is not a strong fit for a woman with so much determination.
There is also the dog, Willow, and Barrie's husband, Will whose names are too similar and should have been changed to something else.
· Description of Character or Intense Scenes
When it came to describing characters in a multitude of settings, it seemed like the author could not be creative. Multiple times Barrie and Will were described as famous movie actors which got boring after a while.
I also noticed intense or odd scenes, due to the nature of the story, were executed poorly. Editing these paragraphs would have improved the writing greatly.
· Main Character's Naivety
The main character Barrie Anne is portrayed as a strong-willed woman, but when it comes to harder decisions about her husband Will, it seems like she can't make any of the right choices. It is frustrating to read since her character is written differently.
· Is it A Witch Story?
During the story we learn the Blythe family has passed down a connection with water leading to premonitions. This is the only time we read any form of witchcraft throughout the story which is a letdown especially when the title has the word 'witch' in it.
· Trying to Create Mystery
To make it seem like the premonitions the characters have in the book were greater than what they were, the author tries to have the aunt seem mysterious, not answering questions or brushing things off. It seemed unnecessary considering the aunt didn't know much about how anything worked in the very end.
The Pros of The Witch's Kind
· Writing Style
The writing style was clear and to the point which made it easy to read while also having a voice similar to my own which I also enjoyed.
· Aunt Charloette
Aunt Charolette was one of the better character's I have read in some time. Her description and characteristics, and quick wits gives off a Practical Magic vibe which I enjoy.
· Back Story
At this point, we all know I love a good back story which this book is filled with. Jumping between the beginning of the war, to the middle, to present day every other chapter lets you see the entire story as you read.
· Unanswered Questions
This novel is a standalone in which case most often times means everything gets tied up in a nice neat little bow. This doesn't leave much to the imagination. This story on the other hand leaves so many questions unanswered with the characters even questioning what will happen next. It's a new take I liked and didn't leave me unsatisfied.
Overall Review Summary
The Witch's Kind was a quick read and kept my attention throughout. The jumping between the present day and the back story pulled me in and kept me interested in seeing what would be happening next. The storyline is familiar with added hints of mystery you wouldn't necessarily find in the 1940's.
The cover itself is beautiful but does not represent the book in any way. I would also change the title to something more fitting for the story as the witch theme does not seem to match.
Besides the weird names, the characters are fleshed out pretty well and I enjoy the fact the author acknowledges the help and suggestions she gained from several book clubs and authors while writing the book.
Overall, I give the book a 4 out of 5 stars. I would recommend reading this book during Spooky Month if you are interested in a new book.