What the Spell? by Brittany Geragotelis, published by Simon and Schuster on 29th January 2013
Almost-sixteen-year-old Brooklyn feels invisible, but she desperately wants to be pretty, to be popular, to be adored by a cute guy. Luckily for her, she’s a witch about to come of age—so she’s only a few spells away from making it all happen.
On her milestone birthday, Brooklyn’s conservative parents finally unbind her powers, which include the ability to magically match couples with a love spell. Brooklyn uses her special skills to get a makeover, new friends, and the attention of her crush, Asher. But the popular clique Brooklyn wants to infiltrate puts her in the same precarious position as her Salem ancestors: If she’s found out, she could be vilified—and lose Asher in the process. Can she make the most of her magic, or will she be luckless and loveless? Be careful what you witch for!
‘What the Spell’ is a fun and enjoyable read about a teenage witch. If this is giving you flashbacks of Sabrina the Teenage Witch then you are on the right track! The author was published after having her story spotted on Wattpad, giving hope to aspiring writers out there. The main character Brooklyn has her magic unbound by her parents on her sixteenth birthday. Suddenly, with the power of magic, anything seems possible and so she sets about turning her life around and hooking herself a boyfriend in the process.
I could understand how exhilarating it must feel to be able to change yourself so completely, but it did seem at times that Brooklyn wasn’t happy with any aspects of her old life. She totally changes her appearance and some of her actions were distinctly questionable, but I could see that she was trying to find her feet and where she fits in at school. This is a theme that readers of the book will probably find familiar. She comes under pressure from ‘The Elite’, a group of the most popular teens at school and desperately wants to be one of them. However, I think she did gradually come to understand that there is more to life than popularity and develops a real relationship with Asher and his sister Abby, along with her ongoing friendship with Ms. Zia, the guidance counsellor.
The romance between Brooklyn and Asher is sweet and warm. Although I initially thought his interest seemed to follow on immediately after her transformation into the new hot girl at school, he did come across as genuine and too shy to say anything to her about his feelings before. They made a cute couple and I really enjoyed reading their scenes together.
I loved the magical aspects of the story and finding out about the history of the witch families and the truth behind the Salem Witch trials. It will be interesting to see how this is explored further in the series, as I would like this element of the plot to be developed more.
Younger readers in particular will love this story about magic, mayhem and romance and I for one am looking forward to more in the series by author Britanny Geragotelis.