Review: The Very Secret Society of Irregular Witches by Sangu Mandanna

Posted March 15, 2024 by Lola in Fantasy, Review, Romance / 8 Comments

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The Very Secret Society of Irregular WitchesThe Very Secret Society of Irregular Witches
by Sangu Mandanna
narrated by Samara MacLaren

My Rating: 5 stars

Genre: Cozy Fantasy Romance
Age Category: Adult
Type of romance: m/f

A warm and uplifting novel about an isolated witch whose opportunity to embrace a quirky new family—and a new love—changes the course of her life.

As one of the few witches in Britain, Mika Moon knows she has to hide her magic, keep her head down, and stay away from other witches so their powers don’t mingle and draw attention. And as an orphan who lost her parents at a young age and was raised by strangers, she’s used to being alone and she follows the rules…with one exception: an online account, where she posts videos “pretending” to be a witch. She thinks no one will take it seriously.

But someone does. An unexpected message arrives, begging her to travel to the remote and mysterious Nowhere House to teach three young witches how to control their magic. It breaks all of the rules, but Mika goes anyway, and is immediately tangled up in the lives and secrets of not only her three charges, but also an absent archaeologist, a retired actor, two long-suffering caretakers, and…Jamie. The handsome and prickly librarian of Nowhere House would do anything to protect the children, and as far as he’s concerned, a stranger like Mika is a threat. An irritatingly appealing threat.

As Mika begins to find her place at Nowhere House, the thought of belonging somewhere begins to feel like a real possibility. But magic isn’t the only danger in the world, and when a threat comes knocking at their door, Mika will need to decide whether to risk everything to protect a found family she didn’t know she was looking for…..

My Review

I heard good things about this book and I like the cozy fantasy genre so I decided to check this one out. I ended up getting this one in audio and am glad I did as I enjoyed listening to it. The Very Secret Society of Irregular Witches is a cozy and heartwarming story of a lonely witch who finds her home and family. It has themes of found family, acceptance and being yourself and has a slow burn grumpy-sunshine romance. All of these are themes and tropes I love and this book handled them all very well. It has a gentle pace with enough going on and I just really enjoyed my time spend listening to this book.

The Very Secret Society of Irregular Witches is mostly told from the point of view of Mika Moon, with a few parts narrated by other characters and I think the few times this happened it helped add more to the story. I really liked Mika as main character, she’s lonely and follows the strict rules witches have to live by to stay safe and survive. After a weird message she visits Nowhere house where three young witches live together and she can’t say not to the offer to tutor them. I thought Mika’s struggles felt very realistic and relatable with how she hid parts of herself and had trouble believing people could love her for who she is.

I really like grumpy sunshine romances and Mika and Jamie embodied this so well. Mika is this ray of sunshine and even though she’s had a hard childhood and she’s lonely, she still is so bright and optimistic and full of hope. And I just wanted her to open her heart to Jamie and the other characters and when she does it’s just amazing to see. I love found family stories like this. While Jamie comes across as a grump, he really has a heart of gold and I loved how he interacts with Mika and falls in love with her and how toward the end he shows her what he has to offer in such a kind and open way and how he loves her for who she is. I really liked these two together. The romance is slow to progress, but I liked seeing them grow closer and the end is just perfect.

All the characters in this book feel so real and alive, they each have their own unique personality and I never had trouble remembering who was who. The narrator really helps here too with how she made everyone sound different and their personalities shine through in their voices. I really liked reading about Ian, Ben and Lucy as well as the three young witches who each have their own personality and how they all grow fond of Mika. I loved the theme of found family and how close they all were and how they grow close to Mika.

This was a new to me narrator and I thought she narrated this book very well. It was pleasant to listen to. Her British accent fit the book and I thought her Irish accent for Jamie sounded well done too as far as I can tell. I liked how she did everyone’s voices different and their personalities shone through in them.

To summarize: This is such a lovely story, it’s a heartwarming and beautiful read and I really enjoyed my time spend listening to this one. I liked the themes of acceptance and found family as well as the grumpy-sunshine romance. All the characters felt vibrant, real and alive and had their own personality. I liked reading about them and seeing how close they were and how they grow close to Mika as well. I liked seeing Mika interact with all the characters. I enjoyed reading about Mika, she was lonely, but still had hope and a sunshine personality. I thought she felt real and relatable. And I just loved seeing her find her home, family and romance. I liked seeing Jamie and Mika grow closer and there are some great scenes between them. I loved how Jamie loves Mika for who she is. The narrator was pleasant to listen to and I liked how she did the different voices and how the characters personalities shone through in their voices. I would definitely recommend this one if you like cozy fantasy, found family and/ or grumpy-sunshine romances.

5 Stars


You can also read my review on Goodreads and Bookbub.

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