I was a normal girl, went to school, stayed out of trouble, and did my homework. I hung around with my best friend, Chantelle, and worked part-time at my Mama's floristry. My life on Earth was as normal as anyone’s could be, other than my being a witch. Nothing exciting ever happened. That was, not until the day Jake arrived. Then, slowly everything changed.
Now, I find myself entering Magickal realms, talking to animals, and encountering monsters that I thought were just myths. I am told I am the Chosen One. I have a job to do. I have to save the Earth.
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Larissa may seem like any other ordinary girl but she is anything but ordinary. She is a witch from a different world on the whole. She was brought to earth as a child by her mother and her well-wishers in order to escape an evil queen took over the control of Panay. But even that is not all… Larissa also happens to be the Chosen One – she is the only one who can defeat the evil queen. But it is almost as if Larissa is out of time because the queen has her own plans for the Earth. Is Larissa ready to do what is expected from her? How will all this end?
The author has created a brand new world setting in The Witches of Panay. A world that obviously has witches, but also has normal humans, magical creatures, crystals and it even has a ‘chosen one’. Basically it has every ingredient for a beautiful fantastical world. Certain aspects of this magical realm are interesting and intriguing. The plot of the story suits the world – simple and uncomplicated. While the story line feels mostly predictable, there are moments when the readers are forced to second guess things. The author’s language and narrative style is simple and dainty. It gave the feeling that the story was being narrated for middle grade readers rather than young adult, but I quite liked it that way as it felt just right for the plot.
Larissa, the protagonist, failed to make a mark on me. I felt as if she was ‘lost’ for most parts. She had no clue about her powers or her destiny and she certainly hasn’t found her voice. Whenever we have read about characters that are meant for great things, they are either trained to meet their destiny or they slowly grow into their roles. In Larissa’s case it was neither and it felt liked she stumbled around till fate was fulfilled. The antagonist didn’t make much of an impression either with the lack of the scare factor. The characters could really do with some more depth and development including Jake and Chantelle.
This book has its high and lows but the world it is set in holds some promise. As such I would recommend fantasy lovers to try this book for an opportunity to read about some unique concepts.
Review Copy received from Novel Publicity