October is just around the corner and that means Halloween is almost here. It’s the perfect time for witch books! Bring on the witches.
Witches are one of our favorite Halloween characters, beside vampires and werewolves. Movies, books…doesn’t matter. They’ve always interested us because there are so many ways witches can be perceived.
Or a little of both
So it’s time to get into the witch craze and start reading! I picked up Josephine Angelini’s Trial by Fire to start off my Halloween reading. What first drew me to the book was the cover. It was eerie looking with a girl walking to a big citadel, fire blocking her path. Was this going to be a good witch book? Bad? Or a little of both?
Plot: This world is trying to kill Lily Proctor. Her life-threatening allergies keep her from enjoying experiences that others in her hometown of Salem take for granted, which is why she is determined to enjoy her first high school party with her best friend and longtime crush, Tristan.
But after a humiliating incident in front of half her graduating class, Lily wishes she could just disappear.
Suddenly, Lily is in a different Salem—one overrun with horrifying creatures and ruled by powerful women called Crucibles. Strongest and cruelest of them all is Lillian . . . Lily’s other self in this alternate universe.
What makes Lily weak at home is what makes her extraordinary in New Salem. In this confusing world, Lily is torn between responsibilities she can’t hope to shoulder alone and a love she never expected.
Lilly Proctor has a condition that make her allergic to everything. Everything you could think of. With an embarrassing event at a party, Lilly wishes she could disappear. A familiar voice from nowhere grants her wish and she’s suddenly transported to another Salem. This alternate Salem is vastly different, ruled by witches. GO GIRLS! But their’s a problem. Lilly’s alternate self is the biggest, baddest witch of them all.
The first chapter left me a little weary with the whole ailments and the fight between Lilly and her best friend turned boyfriend Tristan. It was a set up that had to be written for us to immerse ourselves into Lilly’s own world. I wasn’t sure where the story was going and I wasn’t sure if I would like the turn out. But once Lilly was taken to the alternate Salem by her doppelgänger Lillian, things get exciting.
Lilly is thrust into a world with new people, different rules and witches. She meets the handsome Rowan and an alternate Tristan. Her sister’s alternate is in this world as well and her relationship with Lillian is complicated. In this world things are different with a sickness spreading, outlaws living in the outskirts of town and willstones. This concept captured my attention right away. Every person in Salem has a stone, magic or not. These stones are like extra data storage, like an iPhone or computer. They store information, places and power. A witch’s willstone is very powerful and she can tap into her magic and share it with others, who she has claimed as her mechanics. These lucky few are at her will, using the magic for strength and power to help the witch. A willstone is also like an extra heart, beating and pulsating. Anyone who touches it, the wielder feels it. It’s intimate. And it can be brutal. I love the willstone. I even loved it so much I searched my jewelry drawer, yes I have a drawer, to see if I had a cool stone that could even match those in the book. This is the closest I could come and made the necklace.
It’s small but sparkles! I think my willstone would sparkle.
Willstone comes in many sizes, small, large. Doesn’t matter but there’s usually only one willstone per person. But Lilly has three! A little one golden in color, a medium size rose colored one, and a large one that’ platinum with smokey colors.
The writing was wonderful. The characters had their flaws. Rowan didn’t trust Lilly because of what Lillian did to him. And boy did she do a number on him! Lilly doesn’t know how to react around Tristan because of what her Tristan did to her in her own world. It’s the relationship between Rowan and Lilly that I earned to see grow. It grew slowly, which I loved. It wasn’t love at first sight, which I don’t believe in. First time I saw my husband I loathed him. He made fun of me. HAHA. Rowan couldn’t trust Lilly and he hated her at fires. Love does grow between Rowan and Lilly, soon they begin to trust each other. Rowan teaches her the ways of his world, how to harness her power, and claim others. It’s a tough path for Lilly but the adventure is fast pace and I couldn’t put this book down until I finished it.
A wonderful unique story about witches that left me contemplating one thing….
When will the sequel come out? It ended in a cliffhanger. GAH!
I loved this book and highly recommend it for this Halloween where witches rule.
A little about the author:
Josie was born in a tiny town in Massachusetts called Ashland. When she meets people from Massachusetts and tells them ‘what part’ she hails from, she usually gets one of two answers. The first is: “Isn’t that in Oregon?” And the second is: “I drove by it once on Rt. 9, I think.”
Her next stop was about as different from Ashland as it gets without leaving the country. As soon as Josie was legal, she packed a bag and moved to New York City to attend NYU. Somehow, she managed to squeeze in a little higher learning between bartending shifts and graduated with a BFA.
Massively in debt with college loans, she then moved to Los Angeles for reasons that are still a little blurry. Something about the weather was mentioned, and a vague idea to write poetry and find herself. She found that she is a terrible poet, but she never gave up on the writing bit.
Josie still lives in Los Angeles with her husband and now writes YA fiction.