Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Born Wicked by Jessica Spotswood

Publisher: Putnam Juvenile
Age: Young Adult
Rating: 4.5/5
Series: The Cahill Witch Chronicles #1
Interest: Witches/ DAC 2012/ Lovely cover/ Historical
Source: Bought

Everybody knows Cate Cahill and her sisters are eccentric. Too pretty, too reclusive, and far too educated for their own good. But the truth is even worse: they’re witches. And if their secret is discovered by the priests of the Brotherhood, it would mean an asylum, a prison ship—or an early grave.

Before her mother died, Cate promised to protect her sisters. But with only six months left to choose between marriage and the Sisterhood, she might not be able to keep her word... especially after she finds her mother’s diary, uncovering a secret that could spell her family’s destruction. Desperate to find alternatives to their fate, Cate starts scouring banned books and questioning rebellious new friends, all while juggling tea parties, shocking marriage proposals, and a forbidden romance with the completely unsuitable Finn Belastra.

If what her mother wrote is true, the Cahill girls aren’t safe. Not from the Brotherhood, the Sisterhood—not even from each other.(Summary from

Born Wicked is a book best enjoyed near Halloween when the days are shorter, nights colder and a real sense of magic invades our normally logical minds. There are always certain books that feel like they need their own seasons. For me, I always need to read Cold Kiss by Amy Garvey in winter and I deeply associate The Dark Divine by Bree Despain with Thanksgiving. Fall is the best backdrop for The Village-like feel of Born Wicked. Elders are keeping things hidden, young ladies develop scandalous relationships, fanatic belief in a higher power runs rampant and too many secrets floating around to do anybody good.

Goodness, I loved Cate. I can't even. If there was ever a literary twin for me, it is Cate. (or Maura, but I'm pretty sure I can't muster that level of...drama and emotion.) Cate's so strong and reserved in order to hold her family together and keep the family magic a secret. Yet, she has this massive stubborn and adventurous streak that almost no one sees. She's so protective, but it is for the right reasons and her instincts tend to be dead-on anyway. Maura won my heart forever by being so taken with books. Also, probably for being the only Cahill sister able to wield sarcasm correctly. However, I hated the manipulative side of her, the ruthless part that was willing to do anything for what she wanted. (Seriously, for those who read the book, how could Maura even think of doing that to Cate. Especially after Cate had worked so hard not to do that to anyone.) Maura annoys me, but in the same way egotistical people do. She's an emotional teenage girl that thinks she's the most important person in the world and is shocked to find she isn't. Tess, I loved the sweet baby Cahill. She was so cultured, intelligent and willing to learn and did not make demands on anyone. Honestly, she was more mature than Maura at some points. I want that kid to have her own series.

I was thrilled with how visually driven this book was. It was easy to see the whole town laid out in my head. The ending packs such a punch with all the emotion, action and decision-making. You truly get to see the backbone of all the characters come through. The plot was a little slow at some points, but it all comes together nicely to inspire just the right amount of interest for book two. A couple of the plot twists are easy to guess, unfortunately and the book can feel a little slow when wanting to get to the main events, but it is worth it.

Finn. Oh lord, baby just let me love you. (At first I loathed your name, but now it isn't so bad.) I want Finn. I can't even explain how much. He is exactly like Cate in the way that he'll do absolutely for the people he holds dear. He was so funny, educated, adventurous and willing to do something. I really cannot get over what he ended up doing to protect his family and *strange fangirling sounds* just read the book already. Really, he has made it high onto my list of fictional heartthrobs.

One of the best aspects of Born Wicked was how "normal" witchcraft was. What I mean by that is, it's an accepted part of the Cahill's lives and the lives of everyone in town. Basically there's not a crappy "this is what you are and what you need to do" speech and adjustment period. The girls know they're capable of doing magic and accept that. They don't always like it, but they know it's a part of them and acknowledge accordingly. There is no rejection of magic as impossible, it's an "evil" fact. I love that. Why try to deny to yourself that you can do something remarkable which comes as easily to you as breathing?

The romance. Oh please read it for the romance. The kissing alone is wonderful. There's so much chemistry between them and they're perfect for each other. Magic, autumn, family and kissing, these things should get you to read this book series.

I absolutely loved Born Wicked. I want all of you to go out and buy it now. Love all the characters like I do, and get ready for the next book (Starcursed) to come out in 2013. Seriously, it was so good, I was dream-casting all the girls and making bookmarks for them before I'd even gone 100 pages in the book. It's just that amazing.

Teaser Lines: "No matter how safe and beautiful it is, a cage is still a cage."

Happy Reading,

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