AWRW Book Review: Book of Shadows, Volume One Casting, by Author Michael Beaulieu #ya #bookreview @loveispopdotcom @paris365

What would you do if you found your late grandmother’s book of shadows – a witch’s spell book and journal – and learned that you’re a natural born witch? You’d try one of the spells, of course! And that’s exactly what 16-year-old Emma McGlinchey does. To her amazement, the candle lighting spell she picks actually works.

bosNaturally, Emma has to recruit best friends Lia and Shar into starting a coven.

Soon the girls cast a spell to make everyone like them at the religious high school they’re being forced to attend for the first time. Unfortunately, it fails to make an impression on a group of zealots who set about bullying Lia and Shar for being an openly lesbian couple.

Meanwhile, a love spell they cast for Emma gets the boy of her dreams to ask her out, but the school guidance counselor comes onto her, too. The girls attempt to deal with these problems using other spells, but will they be able to set things right before something catastrophic ensues?

Published April 1, 2017 — Michael Midnight Publishing

Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal

Rating: 4/5 Stars


While cleaning her deceased great grandmother Ruth’s house with friends Lia and Shar, Emma discovers a Book of Shadows. When she learns witchcraft is in her blood, she is both excited and terrified. After all, she is a closet Wiccan who attends a private catholic school.

Recruiting her best friends to join her coven, the girls get themselves in trouble as they experiment with spellwork and witchcraft. Their actions lead to a set of consequences that quickly spiral out of control, leaving Emma to question her faith, and ultimately her actions.

What I enjoyed about this novel was the close bond and friendship between Emma, Shar, and Lia. The girls looked out for one another and stuck by each other — each supportive of one another’s actions. I often wondered what crazy thing the girls were going to do next, and like most teens, they often made the wrong decisions.

Emma was quite the character. She’s boy crazy, often slips into French, and has a fierce loyalty to her friends. She’s often conflicted, and scared to let anyone except her friends see her for who she really is: a Wiccan with witchcraft in her blood.

I found the love spell Emma cast on a boy at her school sweet, and a nice twist/addition to the typical teenage romance story. I liked reading about their dates. They were adorable.

Overall, an enjoyable read about teen witches, sprinkled with romance and teenage angst.

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About the Author

Veteran entertainment journalist Michael Beaulieu’s first novel Reckoning Daze was #1 on Amazon’s best-selling satire chart. Like the book’s protagonist, it was written when Michael was an anorexic living in Los Angeles himself. More recently, Michael published the first volume of his young adult, urban fantasy series Book of Shadows. It’s the story of three 16-year-old girls who form a coven after finding the lead character’s late great grandmother’s spell book, also known as a book of shadows. Michael again drew from personal experience in writing Book of Shadows, being that he’s a Wiccan residing in the book’s Massachusetts setting like his characters. Unlike most fantasy books, the spells in Book of Shadows are all inspired by modern day witchcraft, making the book that much more believable. Currently, Michael is polishing Book of Shadows: Volume Two. If you’d like to be among the first to hear about it,  or Michael’s other projects, head over to his website and subscribe to his newsletter.


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