Review

Witches of East End

by Melissa de la Cruz

Melissa de la Cruz, the New York Times bestselling author of the Blue Bloods and Au Pairs series for teens, has written a highly entertaining book, the first installment of her debut series for adults.

The Beauchamp witches in WITCHES OF EAST END each have unique talents. Joanna, the mother, has the ability to bring people back to life. Ingrid, the oldest daughter, can see the future and read minds. Freya, the wild, younger sister who is soon to be married, creates concoctions to bring out the best side of a person. But the Council has banned them from practicing magic.

Melissa de la Cruz, the New York Times bestselling author of the Blue Bloods and Au Pairs series for teens, has written a highly entertaining book, the first installment of her debut series for adults.

Freya is the first one to slip up. She wants a recently separated couple, Ross and Becky, back together. At the bar, Ross is with a new girlfriend, but Freya can see that Ross and Becky are stealing looks at one another. Freya adds a few extra ingredients into Ross's beer, then stirs it with Becky's cocktail straw. Sure enough, the magic works.

Ingrid gets in on the act next. Her friend at the library can't get pregnant, so she performs a fertility charm. Just like her sister, Ingrid realizes that she loves practicing magic and that it gives her life meaning.

Joanne also finds herself slipping. She entertains her housekeeper's little boy by making teddy bears talk and forming indestructible soap bubbles. These small acts of magic lead to bigger ones. Eventually she brings a friend's boyfriend back from the dead. Like all slippery slopes, it's hard to stop. The urge to give in to bad habits is very tempting.

But like witches throughout history experience, when mysterious events happen, the sisters find themselves at the center of controversy. Since the Beauchamp witches were around during the Salem witch trials, they want to avoid another hunt like that. Lots of unusual things begin to happen, like a strange substance that surfaces off the coast. Scientists can't explain its origin or identify it. Then the Beauchamps' spells start backfiring. A man commits suicide using a rope twisted into a knot exactly like the one Ingrid created. A girl who had Freya's cocktail is missing. A house in Fair Haven becomes a portal into the backbone of the universe. The police want answers, and so do the Beauchamps. Something is happening in their town that seems under the control of otherworldly powers.

WITCHES OF EAST END is a book rich in imagination. Melissa de la Cruz writes vivid descriptions of the Tree of Life along with the Nine Worlds of the Known Universe. She brings together two fascinating worlds for the readers. The first is where the witches live in the present day; they have to deal with everyday problems in their community. The second is a broader, mythical world. The witches must bridge these two realities, and de la Cruz harmonizes these worlds to create a book that you just can't put down.

Reviewed by Kathleen M. Purcell on July 3, 2011

Witches of East End
by Melissa de la Cruz

  • Publication Date: March 13, 2012
  • Genres: Fiction, Urban Fantasy
  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Hyperion
  • ISBN-10: 1401310915
  • ISBN-13: 9781401310912