Six for Sunday: Witchy Books
It is no secret that I love books about witches – here are a few that you could read on this Hallowe’en weekend! I have listed three for younger readers and three for older readers, but there are a lot more recommendations that I would love to give!
The Worst Witch by Jill Murphy
Mildred Hubble is a trainee witch at Miss Cackle’s Academy, and she’s making an awful mess of it. She’s always getting her spells wrong and she can’t even ride a broomstick without crashing it. Will she ever make a real witch?
This may be old but it is still one of the best! If you haven’t joined Mildred Hubble on her adventures, make this the time. I love reading this with my class every year particularly as so many of the boys are put off by a girl on the cover and that fact that it is a girl’s only school…but they then go on to read the whole series after I have read them the first one!
You Can’t Make Me Go to Witch School by Em Lynas
Daisy Wart, a Shakespearean actress with grand ambitions, is FURIOUS at being left at Toadspit Towers School for Witches by her grandmother. SHE IS NOT A WITCH! But Daisy soon becomes drawn into the mysteries of life at Toadspit, and finds that she even has a few magical surprises up her sleeve. . .
The adventures of Daisy the reluctant witch are perfect for fans of magical school stories.
I really enjoyed how fun and original this was, with plenty of humour and lovable characters all set in a magical school, which I am a sucker for. It reminded me in many ways of the anime series Little Witch Academia, and has a lot to offer younger readers.
The Apprentice Witch by James Nicol
A special middle grade debut of magic and courage in a world of witches, written with the charm and enchantment of Circus Mirandus and The Apothecary.
Arianwyn has flunked her witch’s assessment: She’s doomed. Declared an apprentice and sent to the town of Lull in disgrace, she may never become a real witch– much to the glee of her arch-rival, Gimma.
But remote Lull is not as boring as it seems. Strange things are sighted in the woods, a dangerous infestation of hex creeps throughout the town, and a mysterious magical visitor arrives with his eye on her.
With every spirit banished, creature helped, and spell cast, Arianwyn starts to get the hang of being a witch–even if she’s only an apprentice. But the worst still lies ahead. For a sinister darkness has begun to haunt her spells, and there may be much more at stake than just her pride . . . for Arianwyn and the entire land.
I love this trilogy so much! Arianwyn is an endearing, relatable protagonist and the cast of characters surrounding her is full of people that you will grow to care about over the course of the books. I recently read the first chapter of this to 600 spellbound children in school assembly and copies have since been flying off the shelf in our school library since!
Perfectly Preventable Deaths by Deirdre Sullivan
Everyone in Ballyfran has a secret, and that is what binds them together…
Fifteen-year-old twins Madeline and Catlin move to a new life in Ballyfran, a strange isolated town, a place where, for the last sixty years, teenage girls have gone missing in the surrounding mountains.
As distance grows between the twins – as Catlin falls in love, and Madeline begins to understand her own nascent witchcraft – Madeline discovers that Ballyfrann is a place full of predators. Not only foxes, owls and crows, but also supernatural beings who for many generations have congregated here to escape persecution. When Catlin falls into the gravest danger of all, Madeline must ask herself who she really is, and who she wants to be – or rather, who she might have to become to save her sister.
Dark and otherworldly, this is an enthralling story about the bond between sisters and the sacrifices we make for those we care about the most. For fans of Frances Hardinge and Laure Eve.
This is a really creepy one, and definitely one for older readers – check out my full review here.
Sanctuary by V.V. James
The small Connecticut town of Sanctuary is rocked by the death of its star quarterback.
Daniel’s death looked like an accident, but everyone knows his ex-girlfriend Harper is the daughter of a witch – and she was there when he died.
Then the rumours start. When Harper insists Dan was guilty of a terrible act, the town turns on her. So was his death an accident, revenge – or something even darker?
As accusations fly and secrets are revealed, paranoia grips the town, culminating in a trial that the whole world is watching . . .
This is another that I would recommend for older readers, but it is a fantastic book with lots of interwoven storylines for you to really get your teeth into. This would appeal to any readers of mystery and crime as well, as it starts with the death of a teenage boy. Turns out that pretty much everyone around him is lying about what happened on the night he died, as well as everything else in their lives, even without the complication of magic…see my full review here.
Spellbook of the Lost and Found by Moira Fowley-Doyle
One stormy summer night, Olive and her best friend, Rose, begin to lose things. It starts with simple items like hair clips and jewellery, but soon it’s clear that Rose has lost something bigger; something she won’t talk about.
Then Olive meets three wild, mysterious strangers: Ivy, Hazel and Rowan. Like Rose, they’re mourning losses – and holding tight to secrets.
When they discover the ancient spellbook, full of hand-inked charms to conjure back lost things, they realise it might be their chance to set everything right. Unless it’s leading them towards secrets that were never meant to be found . . .
This is a story which will leave a deep impression on you. I fell in love with the characters and was genuinely invested in what happened to them and the mystery of the original diary writers. Twists and turns right up until the end!
Which books have you read that feature witches?
Which books would you like to read for Hallowe’en?
Let me know in the comments!
While you’re here, why not check out my 5 Autumn essentials, how to say Autumn Leaves in ten languages, a tutorial to make adorable Autumn peg doll animals or my book reviews of A Different Pond, A Treason of Thorns, The Light Between Worlds or To Kill a Kingdom?
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