Thursday, July 7, 2011
Book Review - The Near Witch by Victoria Schwab
Source: ARC from publisher
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.
Part fairy tale, part love story, Victoria Schwab’s debut novel is entirely original yet achingly familiar: a song you heard long ago, a whisper carried by the wind, and a dream you won’t soon forget.
The Near Witch, by debut author Victoria Schwab was a fantastic read! There is not one negative thing I can say about it, other than - it ended. Seriously, if the only thing that bothered me about The Near Witch was that the author had to stop writing the book at some point, than that's saying something I think!
This book is about a town called Near, it's a small town, houses surrounding the main part of the town, the moor around the houses and everyone knows each other. Near is a peaceful town until a stranger is spotted in town one day, then unfortunate events begin to happen the next day - children start to disappear. The whole idea of the novel is original, unique and frightening. I may be chicken, but I get scared when children are involved whether it's a book, TV or movie - if kids and witches/paranormal events etc are together, then I'm bound to be a chicken. The Near Witch was no exception.
Schwab creates characters that will become so familiar to you. You will get to know these characters such as Lexi, Cole, the Sisters, Otto, Tyler and Wren and you'll get attached to them in one way or another. Whether it is to feel bad for them, to want to help them or maybe even smack some sense into them - you're attached. Lexi, the main character is a strong young women, who, like her deceased father is a tracker. She is able to pick up clues in nature to find her way around and to feel more connected to her surroundings. She feels she has to be a protector of her family (her mother and her younger sister) as she takes on the role of her father. Cole is a mysterious character who forms a relationship with Lexi that is just so special. And the Sisters, Magda and Dreska play a huge role in The Near Witch and were two of my favourite characters. They have an eerie way to them, and add to the whole creepy feeling of the novel.
The setting in The Near Witch becomes very clear with Victoria Schwab painting it. Down to the ripples in the fields to the wind whispering secrets, you're there and all of your senses will be awake. Victoria Schwab has a writing style unlike any other. The whole novel reads like poetry and you will get lost in her writing and story telling.
The Near Witch was one of the best 2011 books I've had the chance to read and review.And mark my word, this will become a classic. We'll be reading The Near Witch for years to come. I highly recommend this book and I'm eager for more to come from Victoria Schwab!