Harper Voyager. (Threadneedle, Bk. 1). Jan. 2023. 576p. ISBN 9780008407049. pap. $16.99. FANTASY
DEBUT Anna was born into a family of witches, but was orphaned as a baby and raised by her Aunt Vivenne. Vivienne belongs to a coven known as the Binders, who believe that magic is a sin and must be controlled and bound, lest it draw the attention of the Hunters—who have tracked and killed witches for centuries. Vivienne trains Anna to follow in her footsteps as a Binder, and her fanatical protectiveness ultimately becomes abusive. Anna has mostly resigned herself to this fate, but when her mother’s friend Selene, along with her daughter Effie and her friend Attis, arrive they cause Anna to question everything—and to change all of their lives forever. The joy and wonder of magic, including an enchanting world of magical places concealed from humans, is tempered with the horror of the consequences of its misuse. That coupled with the trials of high school, full of bullies and cliques, makes this story fascinating but dark.
VERDICT Already a bestseller in the UK, Thomas launches an engrossing, magic-filled series that follows the coming-of-age of a witch against the backdrop of modern London.
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