The Near Witch
by Victoria Schwab
The Near Witch is only an old story told to frighten children.
If the wind calls at night, you must not listen. The wind is lonely, and always looking for company.
And there are no strangers in the town of Near.
These are the truths that Lexi has heard all her life.
But when an actual stranger-a boy who seems to fade like smoke-appears outside her home on the moor at night, she knows that at least one of these sayings is no longer true.
The next night, the children of Near start disappearing from their beds, and the mysterious boy falls under suspicion. Still, he insists on helping Lexi search for them. Something tells her she can trust him.
As the hunt for the children intensifies, so does Lexi's need to know-about the witch that just might be more than a bedtime story, about the wind that seems to speak through the walls at night, and about the history of this nameless boy.
What did I think of it:
This is one of those books I put on my wishlist when it first released in 2011. Then when I finally wanted to buy it, it was out of print. So when it was rereleased this year I decided I wouldn't miss out again and got hold of it.
And this book is so good!
Schwab is a master at creating the perfect atmosphere for a spooky story. I could easily picture the moors and the small town of Near. I was drawn in by the writing and the story right from the start.
Lexi is a strong and wonderful heroine, I was totally rooting for her to solve the disappearances and to live her life as she wanted, instead of having to conform to what people expected. I also loved her mother. She seemed like a submissive person, but under her meek exterior she hid a spine of steel.
Once I started on this book I couldn't put it down and read into the night to finish it. What a wonderful and gripping read. My edition included a prequel novella at the end of the book, but I will confess I didn't read it. Some things don't have to be explained, but can stay as mysterious as they are.
You bet I'll get my trotters on all of Schwab's books in time.
Why should you read it:
It's an atmospheric and beautiful YA read.
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