It’s spooky season, which means it’s time to read all the spooky books. I don’t have much time to read this month (yay new job & also a horror movie challenge that was not thought through enough), but if I *did*, these are the witchy books I’d read this month.
Payback’s a Witch – Lana Harper
I’m about halfway through this book, and while it’s not what I’d normally pick up, I’m very much enjoying it. The feeling of returning to a place you don’t feel like you belong, the idea that people from back in middle/high school are fully fleshed out adults now – I relate to that. The witchy elements are really fun and the rivalry is enjoyable. It’s definitely trending to be one of my favorite books of 2022, but I’ll reserve judgement until the end.
The Witch of Willow Hall – Hester Fox
I love historical fiction, especially if it’s gothic, and this one promises to be that – set in the 1800s in Mass. One of the reviews says it has an “underlining of menace” and you can sign me up for that. It seems to be more of a subtle witch vibe than the previous book, so I think it’s more in line with what I would normally read.
The Mercies – Kiran Millwood Hargrave
Speaking of historical fiction – this one goes way further back to the 1600s in Norway. I have read very few books set in Norway, much less that take place in that century, so that’s enough to add it to my TBR list. I guess you could say it’s not a witchy book, it’s a witch trial book, but I’m going to count it, since witch trials are very much a part of the history of witches.
The Once and Future Witches – Alix E. Harrow
I’m on the fence about this one – it’s set in the late 1800s and seems to focus on women’s suffrage which normally I’d be all over, but the alliterative names feel over the top cutesy. The reviews are great though, and I do like that it’s a feminist-focused story. And there’s actual witchcraft in it. Let me know if you ever read it!
The Very Secret Society of Irregular Witches – Sangu Mandanna
This has so many elements of a story that I’ll love. There’s an absent archaeologist, a prickly librarian, children being placed into the care of what is basically a governess. And witches, obviously. Add a little romance, I’m sold.
The Ex Hex – Erin Sterling
This one is set in Georgia, and is another romance. I didn’t set out to build a list of witchy romances, but there are apparently a ton of them. There’s a talking cat, too, so you know I added it to Mount TBR. I honestly just really enjoy the idea of putting a hex on your ex and then having to help undo it. It seems like there’s a lot of room for interesting writing there.
The Raven Spell – Luanne G. Smith
I just want to put the first line of the description from Goodreads below, because it truly encapsulates why I want to read this one.
In Victorian England a witch and a detective are on the hunt for a serial killer in an enthralling novel of magic and murder.
This Poison Heart – Kalynn Bayron
I love the idea of a witch who manipulates plants/nature, and I also love surprise inheritances that lead to the main character moving into a haunted and/or ruined estate. This has both. And a centuries-old curse. It’s apparently a retelling, but I’m not sure of what from the description. I would have to guess Greek myths, though.
The Last of the Moon Girls – Barbara Davis
Another mystery/thriller/magical/romance novel. Another “I left home never to return, but then someone died and here I am again, oh and there’s a cute boy” so, yeah, I did add it to the TBR. There’s a murder mystery – though why she didn’t want to solve it while her grandmother was alive and suffering from the town’s gossip I have no idea. I guess we’ll be told eventually.
The Change – Kirsten Miller
As I reach my mid-30s, I am more and more interested in protagonists that are my age or older. And this has 3 menopausal aged women learning that they’re witches and also they try to (do?) solve a murder. A few of the reviews said it was too heavy on the man-hating, which can be kind of a downer, but depending on the story and how their individual backgrounds play into it, a feminist revenge fantasy can be fun.
So there you have it – 9 witchy books I have not read, and 1 I’m currently reading that seem like good Halloween/October reads.
If you pick any of these up, let me know! I would love to get some thoughts on them.
A note – I realized that I didn’t specify when the romances were queer. A few on here are, so in the interests of those who are looking specifically for an LGBTQ+ book: Payback’s a Witch, The Mercies, This Poison Heart, and The Once and Future Witches are tagged as queer/LGBT in Goodreads. Payback I know has several bi characters and the main relationship is f/f.