Jessica's books

The One and Only Ivan
Revolutionary War on Wednesday
Leprechaun in Late Winter
Ella Enchanted
The Courage of Sarah Noble
Plain Murder
Gone-Away Lake
Circling the Sun
Maggie and Max
The Haunting of Sunshine Girl
The Night Sister
Tuck Everlasting
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
Bedknob and Broomstick
Mister Monday
Alice Through the Looking Glass
The Birchbark House
The Hobbit
The Witch's Daughter

Jessica's favorite books »

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Book Review: Spellbinding by Maya Gold

**I received this book from Around the World ARC Tours for review**

Synopsis (from Goodreads):  There's more than one way to be powerful . . .

It is during a routine school project that Abby Silva--sixteen and nearly friendless--makes a startling discovery: She is descended from women who were accused of witchcraft back in 1600s Salem. And when Abby visits nearby Salem, strange, inexplicable events start to unfold. Objects move when she wills them to. Candles burst into sudden flame. And an ancient spellbook somehow winds up in her possession.

Trying to harness her newfound power, Abby concocts a love potion to win over her longtime crush--and exact revenge upon his cruel, bullying girlfriend. But old magic is not to be trifled with. Soon, Abby is thrust headlong into a world of hexes, secrets, and danger. And then there's Rem Anders, the beautiful, mysterious Salem boy who seems to know more about Abby than he first lets on.

A reckoning is coming, and Abby will have to make sense of her history--and her heart--before she can face the powerful truth.
My Thoughts:  Ah, I had such high hopes for this book.  You see, I love reading about witches...shhh...don't tell anyone in my church.  It's apparently a no-no (this is a whole other rant for a whole other post though).  Anyways, I had hopes that this would be a fun book about witches with maybe a little history thrown in, since we are talking about the Salem Witch Trials.  
Sadly, this book was a huge disappointment.  I mean....HUGE!  I will tell you the one good thing about it though.  It's a very easy read so you get through it quickly...if you don't throw it out a window in pure frustration first. 

Let's start with Abby, the main character.  She is supposedly 16 but acts like she is 12.  She has only one friend and of course, has a huge crush on the most popular guy in school.  He is dating the most popular (and very mean) girl in school, who is also perfect in every way.  Abby doesn't stand a chance with Travis.  

In her history class, Abby is assigned a project to trace back her family tree.  She finds out that she is a descendant of a witch.  After she finds out this little tidbit, she suddenly has "magical" powers.  She aces her driver's test (after a little magical help) and heads into Salem to do more research.  There she finds a guy, Rem, who catches her attention (hello love triangle).  She also finds a job.  She has no car and no way to get to the job but she takes it because it's in Salem and guess what?  Everything "magically" works out for Abby.  She gets a car and can suddenly drive over the big bridge with no fear, even though she has had a crippling fear of water/bridges.

As things start falling into place for Abby, she suddenly has more confidence.  The new found confidence, along with a spellbook that found it's way into her bag, and she has decided to steal Travis away from Megan, who has been increasingly mean to Abby.  She casts an attraction spell on Travis and when he starts following her around like a little puppy dog, she starts to fall for Rem.  It was so annoying! Then, she decides to get back at Rem for something and she casts the full blown love spell on Travis.  Now, I know I am not the first person to ask this but why?  Why cast a spell on someone to "love" you when you know it's not really love?  And it NEVER works out.  

Abby is very childish, selfish and whiny.  She is horrible to her dad's new (and very nice) girlfriend and actually does some horrible magic curses on her. I could not relate to Abby at all.  Maybe it's because I'm not 12.  A younger girl might have more fun with this book and Abby.  As for me, she just was not a  likable character.

Travis was too perfect and then he was too pathetic.  I know it was the spell that caused him to be this way but it was super annoying.  Rem and Dyami (Abby's boss) were the most interesting character's for me.  

The ending fell flat for me as well.  It was rushed and just didn't work.  Everything gets wrapped up in a pretty little bow and ends up perfect.  Again, didn't work for me.  So, sadly this book did not do it for all!  I think younger girls (think ages 12-14) might enjoy it but once you get a little older, you are going to be annoyed by it.  

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