Friday, December 16, 2011

Friday Book Recommendation: THE NEAR WITCH by Victoria Schwab

Happy Friday! Our book recommendation this week is THE NEAR WITCH by Victoria Schwab:

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.

Kristi's take: I love a good, creepy ghost story all on its own, but this one also involves witches. Ghosts and witches together? Um, yes please. I personally don't think you could have a more perfect combo, so I was hooked on the premise alone but the author's writing is what brought it all home--it's lyrical, haunting, and gorgeous. This was reminiscent of the stories we used to tell each other in my neighborhood when I was a child (often when trying to out-scare each other). The setting in this book was so richly imagined that it felt like a character in itself, and don't get me started on the wind--let's just say I'll never hear wind the same way again. If you haven't read this one yet, I highly recommend it!    

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