Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Bewitching Season by Marissa Doyle


I love polite society fantasies. Not necessarily set in the Regency or other historical period, but fantasy with all the trappings of fashion, the "season", and just that little bit of romance. Unfortunately, despite all the good reviews I read, Bewitching Season just wasn't that....good. The characters' dialogue sounded too contemporary, the magical system was never explained, and the basic plot was cliched.

Shy, socially inept, studious girl? check.
Outgoing, social, slightly air-headed girl? check.
Dazzlingly handsome young man who sees shy girl's true worth? check.

Granted, these elements were given a bit of a twist by making the girls twins, as well as in the historical setting (immediately before Victoria's reign) but it still felt like Doyle had transferred a modern plot back in time.

It wasn't clear exactly how the magic worked - at one point they were using spoken spells, at one point incancations requiring materials, and the villains used some kind of magical shield and pentacle.
It was an ok read and I'll be looking for the sequel to find out what happens to Pen, but I'm not trading out my Patricia C. Wrede/Caroline Stevermer polite society fantasies yet.

Verdict: The polite society fantasy is a particularly favorite genre of mine, but I haven't met any teens that appreciated it. An additional purchase if you have fans of this genre.


ISBN: 0805082514; Published April 2008 by Henry Holt; Borrowed from the library; Purchased for my personal library

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