My Rating: 5 stars
Genre: Cosy Fantasy/ Urban Fantasy
Age Category: Adult
Magic and mayhem and ghost dogs, oh my…
I’m the plus-size witch who just wants to putter around my magical-plant nursery in peace, but nooo. The universe is conspiring against me, I swear.
The newbie witch down the street just went missing—five minutes before she was gonna give me a ride to our book club. Something magical is stalking through my mundane neighborhood, attacking my neighbors, and I’ve got everybody and their ghost dogs trying to “help” me out.
Pssh, like I can’t handle things by myself.
Oh, and my house—with a mischievous mind of its own—has decided this is the time to get up to more antics.
Just gotta wrangle all this nonsense before the Unawares figure out magic’s real…
It’ll be easy-peasy, right?
A quirky urban fantasy starring a ragtag group of misfits—er, witches, a sentient house, found family, diverse characters, and magical shenanigans.
So I came across this book in a way I usually don’t find new books. At the end of another book I was reading I saw other titles of Robot Dinosaur Press, I have to admit I usually don’t pay these much attention, but this time I did. A Wreck of Witches caught my eye and it sounded exactly like the type of read I enjoy. I discovered it was on audio and decided to get the book in audio. I am so glad I discovered this book as I really enjoyed it. There are witches, magic, a mysterious monster on the loose in a neighborhood, a sentient house and found family. The more mundane and character focused scenes mingle with the slightly tenser and dangerous situations with the monster. All with a magical vibe.
The pacing of this book could be a bit slow at times, but once I got used to it it didn’t really bother me. I felt like the pacing fit the book and it has a bit of a cosy fantasy vibe with how there is danger, but it’s not world ending type of danger. I like how it was contained to their neighborhood and because there is no one available to help Maisie and her friends team up to help discover a way to stop the monster from hurting anyone else. The plot has a clear progression with everything they do leading to new information or new tactics to try. This made the plot feel like it kept progressing even thought it takes them a while to resolve everything. Something about the gentle pace, the characters and the story really worked for me and I was sad when I got to the end of this book as I really enjoyed my time listening to it.
I really liked the Maisie, the main character. I think she has ADHD, although this is only hinted at not explicitly mentioned. She felt realistic in the way she acted and I liked how she has her strengths and struggles. I liked reading about her plants and magic and how she interacted with the house. Maisie isn’t really close to anyone at the start of the book, but she slowly grows closer to the people she teams up with to solve the mystery of the monster that’s lose in their neighborhood. I liked seeing her make connections with these characters and become friends. It really has that found family vibe and I liked seeing the character all work together to solve this problem. And all the side characters are unique and have a clear personality as well and I liked getting to know them.
There something so unique about this book, like the plot with the monster and how it develops, the sentient house and the exact nature of the magical powers. And at the same time it also has enough overlap with other fantasy books to feel like it fits within the genre well, like the cool magical powers. I liked the unique twist on the genre and how this book felt fresh.
I really liked the world building and the way magic worked. It took some time to get the hang of the different terms and get to see what everyone could do with their powers. There are witches as well as mancers, which is what most of the characters are. I liked how everyone had their own unique powers as well as witchcraft which was more universal and which everyone could use. I liked reading about the different powers, Ronni’s dimensions were so handy and cool and Belany’s ability to change into thunder was interesting too. And how Maisie could grow sentience in objects around her was a very unique power I haven’t seen before and I liked the way it impacted the story.
I liked the narrator for this book and I am glad I listened to it. I liked the different vibes and energy she brought to different characters, with Ronni often sounding so energetic and excited. While others sounded calmer. She had enough variety in the voices to make it easy to remember who the characters were. I thought this book worked great in audiobook and I really enjoyed listening to this book.
To summarize: I really enjoyed this book. It’s a fresh and unique twist on the genre. I liked the cosy vibe of this book with the team of characters who have to work together. And I appreciated the smaller scale focus with the monster posing a threat to only their neighborhood. I really liked reading about Maisie, I think she’s neurodivergent and it was interesting to read about how her mind worked. I liked her as a character and how she had her strengths and struggles and felt realistic. I liked seeing her slowly grow closer to the other characters and spends time with and eventually they really become friends. The found family theme really worked for me and I liked the group of characters that’s the main focus of the book and the way they work together. The gentle pace worked for this book, although there were a few moments at the start the pacing felt a bit too slow. The world building was well done and I liked reading about all the cool and unique powers the characters have. The plot kept my attention and I liked seeing how they dealt with everything. I can’t wait to see what the author writes next!