Review: Season of the Witch by Mariah Fredericks

Season of the WitchSource: Random House Kids – – I received this book in exchange for an honest review. I received no compensation
Publisher: Random House Kids
Edition: Hardcover, 256 Pages
Genre: Young Adult Contemporary Fantasy
Purchase:  Amazon / Barnes & Noble / Book Depository*
*I receive a small monetary kickback from Amazon purchases
Rating: 3.5/5

Like Fredericks’s The Girl in the Park, here is a page-turner that perfectly captures the world of New York City private schools, as it explores the notion of power among teenage girls. Queen Bee Chloe is going to make Toni suffer for whatever transpired between Toni and Chloe’s boyfriend, Oliver, over the summer. From day one of eleventh grade, she has Toni branded as a super slut, and it isn’t long before things get so ugly that Toni fears for her safety. What’s a scared, powerless, and fed-up teenager to do? Guided by Cassandra—a girl with some serious problems of her own—Toni decides to stop playing the victim and take control. Cassandra has been experimenting with witchcraft, and together they cast a spell on Chloe that may actually cause her death. Could Toni have really made such an awful thing happen?

Season of the Witch is a really quick read that fits perfectly into the fall season. It’s a book with an interesting premise: A girl who is so fed up with being bullied turns to another girl for help and her answer is witchcraft. It becomes the foundation of their friendship and Toni finds herself wondering if the witchcraft is real.

I blazed through this one and really enjoyed how everything played out. It’s a very contemporary novel with a really creepy feel. Toni is a high school junior with whole lot of snark and a huge problem, she’s managed to get on the bad side of Chloe and now she has to deal with bullying. Which takes a nasty turn and I think it shows a bit more realistic way that teens handle it, instead of seeking help with those who have power to stop it they struggle to deal with it or find ways to retaliate when talking doesn’t solve the problem. In this case Toni turns to her best friend’s cousin Cassandra who promises solutions. Cassandra was one creepy chick…she was oddly detached and cold, which might have been an act at times but it’s really obvious she has some deep seeded issues. To be honest I wasn’t entirely sure why Toni kept seeking her out, other than desperation and maybe that really was on the only reason. However I don’t think I would have stuck around as long even with the supposed victories they were having. Then there is Ella who is bubbly and loves gossip, but doesn’t really have a mean bone in her body. I really liked her even though she talked way too much about other people, but I felt like it was more of shield for her because of her low self-confidence.

I really loved that this was more about the emotional toll that other people can cause on others, and not the witchcraft. Though that was certainly a focal point. It deals with real emotions and just how much one person can affect another, and I think it really succeeded in that. It also deals with real issues and that each was handled in a realistic and respectful way.

The spooky factor really added a lay of creep to everything as well and while it wasn’t the most unique or out there read it was really easy to fall into the story an get caught up in all that was going on.

3.5 stars

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6 Responses to Review: Season of the Witch by Mariah Fredericks

  1. Sounds like a good one for this month. 🙂 Cassandra does sounds creepy, and Toni appears to hve to deal with a lot. I think I would like this one. Great review.

  2. Sounds really emotional! I haven’t heard of it, but looking into more now

  3. Wow, great review Michelle! Haven’t heard of this book before but I love the mix of contemporary and turning to witchcraft. Sounds creepy.

  4. This sounds like a good choice for teens, particularly for a book club — something to spark discussion on bullying, as well as debate on whether the witchcraft in the book really works or not (within the book).

  5. I am glad you liked it, and that it is a quick read, I think I will try and squeeze it in to the October line-up..LOL

  6. Oh interesting! I like the sound of the emotional aspect of it. Definitely one I shall be adding to my tbr!

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