Friday, December 7, 2012

Book Review: Poison

Author: Molly Cochran
Publication Date: December 4, 2012
Publisher: Simon & Schuster/ Paula Wiseman Books
Series: Legacy # 2

Arthurian legend mixes with modern-day witchcraft in this haunting sequel to Legacy, which Publishers Weekly said “should please the legions of paranormal fans looking for a sophisticated supernatural thriller.”

After the riveting—and romantic—events of Legacy, Katy has won Peter’s heart and is now claiming her place in the magical world. Though half the students at her boarding school come from witching lines, the use of magic is expressly forbidden at Ainsworth, so as to keep the witching world hidden from the blue-blooded preppies, aka Muffies, who also walk the halls.

But the Muffies have at least a notion of magic, because Katy catches them staging a made-up ritual—and to her astonishment, the girls collapse at Katy’s feet and fall into comas. When Katy is blamed, she becomes desperate to clear her name and finds herself battling all odds to harness her growing magical powers in order to save the Muffies and dispel the Darkness once more.
“I knew because I was the descendant of one of those witches. A lot of us were, although we kept quiet about it. That was because even there, in the town where at least half the population were witches, we had to live among cowen, aka non-magical people. Actually, we thought of ourselves as talented – we could all do different things – rather than magical. But that wouldn’t have mattered to cowen. They had a nice tradition of destroying anything they couldn’t understand. Look at Salem.” – Hardcopy pg. 4

“Still, it was a long time between high school and college, and with his recent ascent in social status, my guess was that Peter was going to start looking more like Muffy candy and less like someone who’d want to spend his life with the kitchen girl.” – Hardcopy pg. 72 & 73

‘‘I can’t, okay? That’s all I can do. These…things I get, the pictures, whatever…they’re like ribbons or something, floating through my mind. I can see them for a second, and then they float away again. And then I don’t know if I ever really saw them at all. And it wasn’t really seeing in the first place.’” – Hardcopy pg. 101

‘‘The Darkness’ was our name for evil. That is, the distillation of evil. Most people – cowen, anyway – saw evil only through the terrible things they did to one another. But witches knew that it didn’t work that way. Evil existed on its own. The Darkness, grown out of the evil in people’s minds, was an entity unto itself, just waiting to infect whomever it could.” – Hardcopy pg. 117
Katy Ainsworth is a Whitfield witch, meaning she lives in the town right next to the famous Salem, Massachusetts. So you can imagine the fascination with her kind. She attends a school that has been in her family for generations, hence the name: Ainsworth School. But the school is not filled with entirely witches; some of the students are cowen, or non-magical folk. She and her close circle of friends and boyfriend, Peter, have to walk on eggshells and hide their magical abilities for the sake of their school and lives. Their lives are pretty normal or at least normal to the outsider’s eyes; until Katy walks in on four regular school girls practicing some not so ordinary magic. What happens after that may just change Katy’s life forever.
I have always been intrigued by witch stories and I never tire of reading them. Katy wasn’t your average witch and I didn’t think that she possessed the usual confidence and charisma that most of your typical “witch” characters carry, but I still loved her spirit and enthusiasm. As soon as we reach the conflict in this story, Katy’s Nancy Drew skills kick into gear and there is no stopping her. She is such a determined little witch and I loved learning more about her craft and her powers as she strived to understand how four girls could just drop before her eyes.
Katy’s relationship with Peter Shaw and Hattie, who Katy and Peter both work for in her small hometown restaurant, make this book all the more enjoyable. I like the tight knit magical community that Molly has built. All of the supporting characters like Hattie and Katy’s best friends, Becca and Verity, have small roles that really pack the punch. They all bring something different to the table and learning about each of their magical abilities was very interesting. I thought Peter and Katy’s relationship was adorable, even though I had to wonder at times if they were going to last. All good relationships have to face some storms right?
The supernatural side of this story was very well written and somewhat different from others. I liked that while I was mostly reading about a magical community, there was still a non-magical community existing outside of it. Katy was a witch that had crazy magical powers, but she had a limited amount of people that she could share it with. Then a few other magical characters step into the scene and just add to the supernatural splendor that is Molly Cochran’s writing. Each new detail and as each chapter progressed it’s like another piece of the puzzle was put into place. It was complete by the end and I loved it. I am anxiously awaiting the next novel in this series!
***Thank you to Molly Cochran and her publishers for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review***

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