The Black Witch
Book 1 in The Black Witch Chronicles
by Laurie Forest
Publisher: Harlequin TEEN
Read on: September 10, 2018
Format: Library Book
Elloren Gardner, granddaughter to the powerful Black Witch, Carnissa Gardner, learns quickly how cruel people can be after she was granted the opportunity to attend university. Outside of her sheltered life, Elloren must learn how to navigate the world where tensions rise between the races and make her own decisions.
While perusing NetGalley I always find sequels to titles I’ve never heard of. So when I research the first book (to avoid spoilers) I become intrigued which makes me request the sequel. With the release of the next book to the series I quickly picked up this book that I’ve had on loan from the library for a while.
I was surprised by the fantastical elements in this book. I assumed that the book was going to have a supernatural element based on the title. Time was taken to building the world and the people that live in it. The people are divided into the Gardnerians and the Icarals. Icarals are the lupines, the Fae, the Urisk, and more who are deemed “unpure” to Gardnerians. They have lived in a period of relative peace before the prophecy of another Black Witch, more powerful than the old, and a possible uprising stirs the tension between both groups again.
While reading I was frustrated by Elloren and the prejudices of the world. In the beginning she was easily influenced by those around her (along with some discreet manipulation and white lies) that I felt she just went through the motions without thinking for herself. I kept waiting for her to make her own decisions because I ended up lacking empathy for her situation. Once she decided to take an active part in making her own decisions and understanding the consequences that can result from them I started to like her a bit more. I feel quite proud of her character progression that I can’t wait to see what is in store for her in the next book.
I felt the romance involving Elloren was a bit lackluster. I just couldn’t feel the chemistry and I found myself having little interest in the love triangle. The romance doesn’t play a big role in the story (so far, but I get the distinct impression it might in the future) and Elloren does have an eventful life that make the story interesting. The minor characters surrounding Elloren are an interesting group. I find myself caring for them (and a bit more interested in what will happen to them).