Genre: Adult Fantasy
Format/pages: Hardcover 288 pages
Format read/Source: ARC via LibraryThing Early Reviewers, read June 15 2011
Rating: 4 / 5 Stars
Melissa de la Cruz is best known for the young adult series Blue Bloods, and this is her first book written for adults. I have enjoyed reading the Blue Bloods vampire series, although I’m a bit weary of vampires these days. This book renewed my interest in the author’s work with the story of the Beauchamp family of witches. This entertaining series debut captured my attention immediately and kept me entertained with the delicious twists and turns. Fans of the Blue Bloods series will also be pleased to know that a few of the characters make guest appearances in the book. The family history of the Beauchamp family, their powers and complicated love lives captivated me from the first pages. I’m not even a fan of books about witches, but this one is too fun to pass up.
The Beauchamp witches are Joanna and her daughters Freya and Ingrid and they live in quiet North Hampton, New York. They got into some trouble with their witchcraft centuries ago in Salem and now the Council has forbidden them from using their powerful spells. They live a quiet life and are good neighbors in the community. Ingrid is the bookish librarian with the power to see the future and heal using her magic knots. Freya is the free spirited bartender who can solve problems of the heart with a love potion. And Joanna their mother has the ability to cure illnesses and even resurrect the dead. They have managed to keep up their end of the bargain and avoid using magic until life starts to get complicated. Unexplained illnesses, violent acts, and other strange events occur and suddenly using their magic starts becoming irresistible. Old habits die hard for the Beauchamp witches. Is history repeating itself?
The three witches are all compelling characters who share in the narration of the story. Freya is about to be married to Bran Gardiner, although she is drawn to his brother Killian. Freya has some steamy scenes in this book to let you know we are not in young adult territory here. The women each have complications in their lives that cause them to break the rules with their magic. In addition to the main characters, there is a colorful cast of secondary characters. The author does a good job of introducing the town of North Hampton as it comes alive with the well-rounded group of neighbors and co-workers.
The lives of the coven members are very interesting on their own, but more layers are revealed in their story to take it to a whole other level. Their history with the Salem witch trials, and even some Norse mythology concepts are introduced. Zombies and vampires also add to the fun. The ending of the book is such a huge twist of a cliffhanger that it will ensure readers will pick up the next book in the series.
I enjoyed this fast-paced and entertaining book, and think it has cross-over appeal to new adult fans as well as mature fans of the Blue Bloods series. The twists and turns and lively characters kept me turning pages late into the night. I can’t wait to find out what happens next. The Witches of East End will be released June 21.
Watch the book trailer:
Find out more, buy the book, or read more reviews here:
- ‘Blue Bloods’ author Melissa de la Cruz’s new book gets a trailer: Exclusive! (shelf-life.ew.com)
- Book Review: Witches of East End by Melissa De La Cruz (blogcritics.org)