In her small Welsh town, there is no one quite like Morgana. She has never spoken, and her silence as well as the magic she can’t quite control make her a mystery. Concerned for her safety, her mother quickly arranges a marriage with Cai Bevan, the widower from the far hills who knows nothing of the rumours that swirl around her. After their wedding, Morgana is heartbroken at leaving, but she soon falls in love with Cai’s farm and the rugged mountains that surround it, while slowly Cai himself begins to win her heart. It’s not long, however, before her strangeness begins to be remarked upon in her new village. A dark force is at work there—a person who will stop at nothing to turn the townspeople against Morgana, even at the expense of those closest to her. Forced to defend her home, her love, and herself from all comers, Morgana must learn to harness her power, or she will lose everything.
Paula Brackston’s debut novel, The Witch’s Daughter, was the little book that could—with a captivating story, remarkable heroine, and eye-catching package, it has now netted over 40,000 copies in all formats. Now Paula returns with The Winter Witch, another enchanting tale of love and magic, featuring her signature blend of gorgeous writing, a fabulous and intriguing historical backdrop, and a headstrong and relatable heroine readers will cheer for.
First things first, I want to talk about that cover. Is that not gorgeous? It looks even better when you actually have the paperback in your hand. I could see myself buying this book just for the cover. I’m such a cover whore…and oh my goodness…that one is beautiful!
The Winter Witch is not a YA book. It’s more of an adult/paranormal/historical that leans more toward historical fiction. This is not a book for people who like fast paced books or huge paranormal aspects in their books. It’s the kind of book that calls for a specific type of reader. The type of reader who loves historical fiction, sweet romances, and taking their time with a book. The Winter Witch isn’t the sort of book that you can just plow through. At least not for me. If you like a lot of action going on in your books, then this one probably isn’t for you. However, fans of classics and historical fiction are going to adore this book.
This is a little bit different of a review for me, because I’m not going to rate the book. I don’t think that that’s really fair with this one, because it’s not really my type of read. However, I can appreciate and acknowledge that Paula Brackston’s writing style is gorgeous and well executed. There was really nothing wrong with the book itself. I just don’t overly love historical fiction, and I was a little bored. I was hoping for more witchcraft and more paranormal aspects to the book. I didn’t quite get that. This one was a little more low key and soft. So again, that’s not quite for me. BUT there are going to be lots of people who adore this book.
I do have to address the one major complaint that I had with The Winter Witch. There were some big chapters, BIG paragraphs, and lots of description paragraphs with very little communication between the characters. That isn’t a new or a bad thing. There are several books like that, especially in the adult historical genre. Personally, I hate reading books like that. I need smaller paragraphs, stopping points, and lots of communication to keep myself engaged. I kind of felt that The Winter Witched droned on and on in several areas. Some people are going to like it…others won’t.
A couple other complaints were that some of the names and places were very difficult for me to pronounce. The only time I find that acceptable is with high fantasy. In any other genres it bugs the crap out of me. Also, I wasn’t the biggest fan of how Morgana didn’t say one single word until the very last page of the book. That was just a little too much for me. I was hoping that that would have been solved somewhere in the middle of the book.
In a way, The Winter Witch reminded me a lot of Pride and Prejudice. I’m not talking about the book, I’m more so referring to the movie with Keira Knightly. While they were different storylines, they had a very similar feel that I found to be engaging. As the biggest P&P movie fan, I can honestly say that The Winter Witch would make an amazing movie. While the book itself wasn’t so much for me, I think that I would fall head over heels in love with it if it was a movie. Fingers crossed!
One thing that is really going to draw in readers is the romance between Morgana and Cai. I thought that they were absolutely beautiful. I love myself a good romance. I truly think that this one is going to highly appeal to readers!
This really was a unique review to write. Normally when I get bored or what not, I usually just DNF if it and write a little bit about it. With this one, though, I feel like there’s a lot to say about it. My number one reason is probably because I feel that this really is a spectacular book! I know that there are going to be hugeeee fans! This one really just comes down to preference. Some people are going to love it and others aren’t. And that happens with every genre. But one thing is fore sure: Paula Brackston is one damn good writer.
This book is now out in stores. Go buy your copy today!
Publication Date: January 29th, 2013
Publisher: Thomas Dunne Books