Review: Girl's Guide to Witchcraft by Mindy Klasky

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Review: Girl's Guide to Witchcraft by Mindy Klasky

Post by eleika »

Fans of Mindy Klasky’s previous books will know her to be an excellent storyteller. Her Glasswright series was not only stunning, but in my opinion, a sweeping epic. Regardless of your feelings towards her previous fantasy novels, there is no doubt that they are serious in nature; I would go so far as to call them dark.

That’s why it was such a surprise to discover that Klasky’s latest book, published by chick-lit company Red Dress Ink, is, well, chick-lit. I was shocked when I heard. How could a writer go from Dark and Sweeping to something that sets off Harlequin Warning Bells? More importantly, would she even be any good?

The answer: yes. Like any decent fantasy writer, Klasky holds her own. Girl’s Guide to Witchcraft is as rich in detail and vividly entertaining as any of her more serious works. Librarian Jane Madison is as awesome a character as Ranita Glasswright, and reacts to her circumstances with just as much gusto. Okay, so I’ll admit that as a library geek myself, I’m predisposed to enjoy the smattering of professional jokes, but they are further proof of how much detail Klasky’s put into this work.

And she’s hardly left her genre. The novel’s premise, after all, is about a librarian who finds a trove of old spell books in the basement of her new home, only to discover her latent magical talents. And whether she’s annoying her Warder (think Watcher from Buffy), keeping her gay cat-man familiar, Neko, under control, or slamming back mojitos with her best friend, Jane Madison is far from ordinary. Sure, Girl’s Guide to Witchcraft probably rates as chick-lit, but die-hard fantasy readers should turn a blind eye to that. This is a book that deserves to be read, and I for one can’t wait for its sequel, Sorcery and the Single Girl.
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