This review is spoiler free.
“We stay like that for a long time.
Until, finally, something inside starts to stitch itself back together.”
Series: These Witches Don’t Burn
Published: 2019, by Razorbill.
Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult, LGBT, Paranormal, Witches
Contains: Strong Language, Arson, Death, Murder, Violence, Blood/Gore, Anger, Animal Cruelty
‘These Witches Don’t Burn’ follows Hannah, a girl from Salem, Massachusetts, who has a huge secret: she’s an Elemental witch. If she’s ever caught using her abilities in front of a Reg (A non-witch) she could lose her powers for good. So, Hannah spends her time avoiding her ex-girlfriend, hanging out with her Reg best friend, and working in a store selling Wiccan tools to tourists. However, when evidence of dark magic begins to appear across Salem, Hannah is sure it’s a Blood Witch and that only amplifies when attacks on Salem’s Witches become deadlier.
I’ve wanted to pick up this book since I first heard about it’s release last year, adoring the concept and cover. However, it wasn’t until I finally found it in stores that I managed to own it for myself… and what a beautiful addition it is to my bookshelves.
Hannah made for a brilliant protagonist. She’s quirky and unique, keeping the audience’s interest while her narrative moves you through the story at a gripping pace. I adored her character, having falling in love with witches and there not being anywhere near enough female LGBT narratives in YA literature, so this was a welcoming addition.
There are no characters in this novel that are unlikable, making for a refreshing change in recent novels. Hannah’s Ex-girlfriend Veronica was a fiery addition, whilst her best friend Gemma brought a wonderful element of humour to the story. She’s the best friend that everyone wishes they had, and I loved reading her interactions with Hannah. Morgan was another wonderful addition, filling her place in the tale very memorably and lighting up the room with her sparkling personality.
The writing style is particularly fast paced, guiding you through event after event and highlighting how hectic the life of an Elemental witch can be. Isabel Sterling’s talent for character shines through the pages as Hannah leads you through the story, her personality luring you in further whilst even the background characters have the ability to keep you entertained.
Overall, I adored this novel. The characters were charming, the concept was enchanting and the representation is just what we needed within the YA genre. A new personal favourite.