A Wicked Magic
The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina meets The Craft when modern witches must save teens stolen by an ancient demon in this YA fantasy-thriller debut.Dan and Liss are witches. The Black Book granted them that power. Harnessing that power feels good, especially when everything in their lives makes them feel powerless.During a spell gone wrong, Liss's boyfriend is snatched away by an evil entity and presumed dead. Dan and Liss's friendship dies that night, too. How can they practice magic after the darkness that they conjured?Months later, Liss discovers that her boyfriend is alive, trapped underground in the grips of an ancient force. She must save him, and she needs Dan and the power of The Black Book to do so. Dan is quickly sucked back into Liss's orbit and pushes away her best friend, Alexa. But Alexa has some big secrets she's hiding and her own unique magical disaster to deal with.When another teenager disappears, the girls know it's no coincidence. What greedy magic have they awakened? And what does it want with these teens it has stolen?Set in the atmospheric wilds of California's northern coast, Sasha Laurens's thrilling debut novel is about the complications of friendship, how to take back power, and how to embrace the darkness that lives within us all.

A Wicked Magic Details

TitleA Wicked Magic
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseJul 28th, 2020
PublisherRazorbill
ISBN-139780593117255
Rating
GenreYoung Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal, Witches

A Wicked Magic Review

  • Angela Staudt
    January 1, 1970
    Thank you Penguin Teen for an eARC in exchange for an honest review.I was really looking forward to this book because of the synopsis. Liss and Dan are best friends and discover this mysterious black book that turns them into witches. Everything is great until they cast a spell that makes Liss’s boyfriend, Johnny, disappear. Having to deal with what they have done, they can’t be friends anymore and move on with their lives. A couple months later Liss figures out Johnny is just stuck in a magical Thank you Penguin Teen for an eARC in exchange for an honest review.I was really looking forward to this book because of the synopsis. Liss and Dan are best friends and discover this mysterious black book that turns them into witches. Everything is great until they cast a spell that makes Liss’s boyfriend, Johnny, disappear. Having to deal with what they have done, they can’t be friends anymore and move on with their lives. A couple months later Liss figures out Johnny is just stuck in a magical place, she needs Dan and her new friend Alexa’s help to free him.I mean that sounds super exciting and I love magic in books, I didn’t get any of that. This book literally went nowhere the entire time. I thought this book was going to focus mainly on the magic, but that didn’t happen. We follow Liss and Dan trying to mend their broken friendship, and we follow Alexa and Dan’s friendship and also their home lives. It was very dreary in parts and this book should have some trigger warnings for self-harm, suicidal thoughts, mental, and physical abuse. Another part that made me super cringey was the writing style, it felt very repetitive and childlike. The author uses the same words over and over again, it was to the point that I was skimming a lot of chapters. I just am drained from reading this book. I really wanted more magic and I wanted to know a lot more about this place that Johnny was being held. Even the ending was a letdown, there was no big reveal or twist. It was just kind of typical. Please note that this is 100% my opinion and while I may not have liked this book, I know others will love it.Also note, there is a talking cat named Domino and I did really like him.
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  • NAT.orious reads ☾
    January 1, 1970
    cover * intriguing and mischievous*me: cover * intriguing and mischievous*me:
  • Nicole| Booklover.zzz | Zamudio-Roman
    January 1, 1970
    Ever just read a book and go 🤔 ‘that wasn’t what I was expecting’ ... If you have then you and I have been on the same boat. Most recently I finished Sasha Lauren’s YA debut fantasy A WICKED MAGIC. The opening had a great hook to it and the author used detailed writing to build scenes in the beginning. I felt that as the novel went on, however, her orientation and organization of the story and some of the characters fell apart. There were good ideas started but not finished and an overall plot s Ever just read a book and go 🤔 ‘that wasn’t what I was expecting’ ... If you have then you and I have been on the same boat. Most recently I finished Sasha Lauren’s YA debut fantasy A WICKED MAGIC. The opening had a great hook to it and the author used detailed writing to build scenes in the beginning. I felt that as the novel went on, however, her orientation and organization of the story and some of the characters fell apart. There were good ideas started but not finished and an overall plot summary that would leave most readers feeling like the author left them hanging (when it came to the magic.)
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  • Kaya
    January 1, 1970
    i'm going to dnf this one at around 30%, because I honestly don't think me and this book are quite hitting it off :(a huge thank you to the publisher for the e-ARC in exchange for an honest review!
  • Sasha Laurens
    January 1, 1970
    Thank you so much for your interest in my book about sad chaos witch-girls! As a lot of reviewers have noted, this book deals with some heavy content and it might not be for everyone. Content warnings are posted at https://www.sashalaurens.com/content-.... Thank you so much for your interest in my book about sad chaos witch-girls! As a lot of reviewers have noted, this book deals with some heavy content and it might not be for everyone. Content warnings are posted at https://www.sashalaurens.com/content-....
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  • Cillian
    January 1, 1970
    Great cover. Tacky ratings.Bye, bye, A Wicked Magic!
  • Ekaterina
    January 1, 1970
    Such a strange story.
  • Jay G
    January 1, 1970
    Want to see more bookish things from me? Check out my Youtube channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfer...*I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest review* 2.5/5 StarsDan and Liss discover a magical black book that makes them witches. They try to cast a spell to change their lives, but it goes wrong, causing Johnny, Liss's boyfriend to go missing. The girls friendship falls apart until they realize they need to work together, with the help of Dan's new fri Want to see more bookish things from me? Check out my Youtube channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfer...*I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest review* 2.5/5 StarsDan and Liss discover a magical black book that makes them witches. They try to cast a spell to change their lives, but it goes wrong, causing Johnny, Liss's boyfriend to go missing. The girls friendship falls apart until they realize they need to work together, with the help of Dan's new friend Alexa, in order to bring Johnny back. I was initially drawn to this book because of the cover and the promise of witches, but ultimately, I was disappointed with this one. This book definitely needs trigger warnings for A LOT of things such as: cutting, suicide ideation, depression, underage relationships between multiple younger girls and an older male and physical and mental abuse. I enjoyed the story in the beginning, but after awhile it became very repetitive and it felt like the story was just going in circles without actually moving forward in anyway. I also was a bit disappointed in the ending, it was extremely anticlimactic for the amount of build up there was for it. It seemed like the characters just kind of stumbled upon how to defeat the "bad guy" rather than actually having a definitive plan. I also was not a fan of the friendship between Dan and Liss, it was extremely toxic and I just wanted to keep them away from one another through out the entire story. The only character I actually liked was Alexa, she grew a lot as the story progressed and I wish there had been more of a focus on her and her story, rather than the other two. Overall, it was alright, but nothing special in anyway.
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  • Mac (bookshelfpalace)
    January 1, 1970
    TW: Depression and self-harm.Thank you Penguin Teen for providing me with an e-arc of the book.I found this book to be slow paced at the beginning, which made it difficult to get into. I just felt like it took awhile for the plot to really start moving and get interesting. That being said, once the search for Johnny started, the book did quickly became more enjoyable and I couldn’t put it down. Alexa’s POV was the most grasping at first, but as I progressed further into the book Liss and Dan’s P TW: Depression and self-harm.Thank you Penguin Teen for providing me with an e-arc of the book.I found this book to be slow paced at the beginning, which made it difficult to get into. I just felt like it took awhile for the plot to really start moving and get interesting. That being said, once the search for Johnny started, the book did quickly became more enjoyable and I couldn’t put it down. Alexa’s POV was the most grasping at first, but as I progressed further into the book Liss and Dan’s POV really started to grow on me too. If you like witch gangs and paranormal creatures I recommend picking up A Wicked Magic!
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  • Paula M. of Her Book Thoughts!
    January 1, 1970
    Hello everyone, just sharing that you can get to know the characters more of A Wicked Magic HEREin my Author Takeover with Sasha and we're giving away a copy too! Open INTERNATIONALLY! Hello everyone, just sharing that you can get to know the characters more of A Wicked Magic HEREin my Author Takeover with Sasha and we're giving away a copy too! Open INTERNATIONALLY!
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  • Simon Fennex
    January 1, 1970
    I’m so freaking hyped about this title! It’ll better be good :O
  • Deepika
    January 1, 1970
    The cover, the title and the Blurb was great than the story. I was so intrigued by seeing the synopsis about witches and magic. But nothing more happened than what is in the synopsis. Not much impressed with the writing style. The story mainly focuses on teen drama and it revolves around three friends. Liss and Dan were best friends. Liss was more obsessed with the magical book and couldn't even bother to know what was happening in Dan's life. She was such a self-obsessed, toxic character I have The cover, the title and the Blurb was great than the story. I was so intrigued by seeing the synopsis about witches and magic. But nothing more happened than what is in the synopsis. Not much impressed with the writing style. The story mainly focuses on teen drama and it revolves around three friends. Liss and Dan were best friends. Liss was more obsessed with the magical book and couldn't even bother to know what was happening in Dan's life. She was such a self-obsessed, toxic character I have ever come across. I don't like any characters except Alexa who was more caring towards Dan. I felt like Dan didn't give much importance to Alexa who was there for her when she has no one else.The plot was really good and different but it wasn't execute well. There was this "ancient creature" the girls were talking about throughout the book. Finally, when it arrived, it was not as frightening as it would have to be. I don't know where the girls summoned the power to resist his manipulation because they were not portrayed as strong characters save for Liss. The story was moving so slow at the beginning and it got interesting after crossing 3/4 of it. It was starting to make sense but the climax fight ruined it all. The only reason that kept me to continue the book was Alexa. I would not recommend this book to anyone.
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  • Savannah Porter
    January 1, 1970
    This book has all the witchy, spooky vibes. When Dan and Liss become witches, they try to change their lives with magic. But magic has consequences, and a spell gone wrong takes Liss's boyfriend away. The story is set on the northern Pacific coast, and at its core, the book tells the story of friendship. I enjoyed learning about the magic, and I particularly liked Alexa, Dan's friend, and her growth through the story. I almost wish the whole book was just about her. I liked the atmospheric setti This book has all the witchy, spooky vibes. When Dan and Liss become witches, they try to change their lives with magic. But magic has consequences, and a spell gone wrong takes Liss's boyfriend away. The story is set on the northern Pacific coast, and at its core, the book tells the story of friendship. I enjoyed learning about the magic, and I particularly liked Alexa, Dan's friend, and her growth through the story. I almost wish the whole book was just about her. I liked the atmospheric setting and the descriptions of magic. But still, this book didn't engage me like I thought it would, and I didn't love the plot with the evil magic guy and kidnappings. But it's witchy and dark and spooky, which lives up to the title. Writing Aesthetic/Style: 3Plot/Movement: 3Character Development: 3Overall: 3Thank you, Razorbill and NetGalley, for the review copy!*Trigger/Content Warnings: f-words, self-harm, and suicidal thoughts
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  • Nicole (FearYourEx)
    January 1, 1970
    First of all: Trigger Warnings include self harm, depression, and anxiety. There's also a cult, parental abandonment, suicidal thoughts, death of a loved one, and kidnapping. This book also has some pretty heavy stuff going on like a high school girl dating a homeless guy twice her age. So avoid this book if those will bug you.2.5/5 starsThank you to the publisher for the early copy via netgalley.I read to escape reality as I am a Veterinary Technician and deal with a ton of heavy stuff in my da First of all: Trigger Warnings include self harm, depression, and anxiety. There's also a cult, parental abandonment, suicidal thoughts, death of a loved one, and kidnapping. This book also has some pretty heavy stuff going on like a high school girl dating a homeless guy twice her age. So avoid this book if those will bug you.2.5/5 starsThank you to the publisher for the early copy via netgalley.I read to escape reality as I am a Veterinary Technician and deal with a ton of heavy stuff in my daily life. I was incredibly intrigued by the magic and the fantastical parts to this book. BUT this was a book that's more about the journey so we read a ton about Dan's depression, Liss' compulsive behaviors, Alexa's self doubt, and etc. I had a hard time getting completely into this story and actually dreaded some if these moments. They were very important to the character growth and the ending though, I just wish they were farther apart and not as long. And I wish we got a bit more magic and maybe more tales about Kasyan.I feel like we had a ton of build up for our "Big Bads" in this book and I was expecting like 20% of the book to be battling them and trying to outsmart them. In the end it felt more like 5% was an anti-climactic battle where our protagonists just accidentally stumbled on the answer. Despite the heavy themes to this book if that final battle were a bit harder and a bit more epic I'd probably have given this book 4 stars. But we learned far more about Dan's obsession with the IronWeaks and the singer of it and her selling pottery the day the final battle went down than we did about the Antagonist.
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  • *mk*
    January 1, 1970
    Bruh. I finished this book but even after, I'm still not sure if I really liked it. Things I appreciated tied together with things that annoyed me. A breakdown: Dan and Liss are two high school best friends who find a magic book that has a spell for turning them into witches (of course, they cast that spell and it is successful). Eventually, something (several somethings) goes horribly wrong and their friendship breaks apart. The book then picks it up senior year of high school, with the two cha Bruh. I finished this book but even after, I'm still not sure if I really liked it. Things I appreciated tied together with things that annoyed me. A breakdown: Dan and Liss are two high school best friends who find a magic book that has a spell for turning them into witches (of course, they cast that spell and it is successful). Eventually, something (several somethings) goes horribly wrong and their friendship breaks apart. The book then picks it up senior year of high school, with the two characters dealing with their magic and the fallout from their friendship in their own way. Eventually, of course, they are brought back together to try and fix their mistakes and hopefully, their friendship. Of course, some other magical nonsense might get in the way. Some things I liked: the cover! big fan. The author was great at creating this atmosphere, which had creepy, Northwest, weird hokey small town vibes. I also thought the three main characters (Dan, Liss, and Dan's friend Alexa) had their own distinct journeys to go on throughout the story and each felt fully fleshed out and complex in a way that can sometimes be missing from YA (though this book gets off to a rough start because the characters can come off as a bit annoying; once you dive in more it starts to make sense). The three characters and the way their relationships to one another changed over time, I thought was very well down. Also, this book dealt with some surprisingly dark topics, though some things never felt fully fleshed out, like some issues with a character's parents. I though this book was good at showcasing both the healthy and unhealthy ways people deal with trauma, and how their relationships to each other can change because of that. Some things I didn't like: the villain was lame. Sorry. And the final battle was also, meh. I'm not sure I can put into words why I didn't like it, but I think the author was trying to show how much they had progressed since the beginning of the story but it didn't necessarily work for me. The pacing in this book can also be a little off, especially at the beginning. I respect that the author wanted to set things up as quickly as possible so we could dive right in but DAMN. Anyway, the story ends up being told in flashbacks that occasionally made me want to roll my eyes with the teenage drama (but it is a book for teens so that is the price I pay, but, again, the relationships were so complex that the reasoning behind their fractured friendship felt cheap). Also, the world's biggest disappointment was the potential for this book to be much queerer then it actually was (though that may just be my reading of, I will be interested to here what other reviewers say about how they read the book/the character's journey). I will keep this vague to avoid spoilers but I thought one character was being written to possibly realize they were queer in some way, but nothing ever came of it except some self-love (which is still also good for this character's journey). Because of this, I was semi-disappointed by the ending. In the end, it really is about strong friendships which, again, is good but just wasn't what I was expecting. Also, this whole book in general just felt kind of distant. I think there was something small missing from this book, but it was enough to throw me off. Like some books have a lot of heart while this book was just kind of chilly, if that makes sense. It had a lot of other good things going for it but that one last spark just wasn't there for me. Still, if you can get invested in this book I think it is worth the read, just so we can talk about whether or not you thought this book was going to be queerer then it actually was!
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  • Leslie Lutz
    January 1, 1970
    A WICKED MAGIC is a mind bender of a book. After I finished it, I found myself going back to the characters and their dilemmas and wondering what's next for them--always a good sign that a story has done its job. Books about witches are usually about power—power that intoxicates, power that tests the mettle of the characters, and power that poses interesting questions about the human potential for good and evil. But this book is also a book about girl relationships. Flawed characters like Liss, A WICKED MAGIC is a mind bender of a book. After I finished it, I found myself going back to the characters and their dilemmas and wondering what's next for them--always a good sign that a story has done its job. Books about witches are usually about power—power that intoxicates, power that tests the mettle of the characters, and power that poses interesting questions about the human potential for good and evil. But this book is also a book about girl relationships. Flawed characters like Liss, Dan, and Alexa are such excellent vehicles for a witchy story. Secrets, hidden guilt, past transgressions—A WICKED MAGIC has it all. Also, it was refreshing to see mental health issues drawn with complexity, rather than the mental health issues being thrown in as a decoration.In addition to interesting human characters, you also have setting as character, which is one of my all time favorite elements of story. The author’s descriptions of the Northern California coast are just mesmerizing, and her caves at low tide really creeped me out. If you love a dramatic setting that underlines the witch nature of the story, you have to read A WICKED MAGIC.
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  • Leslie Baker
    January 1, 1970
    Rating: 1/5 🌟Author: Sasha Laurens Publisher: RazorbillRelease Date: 7/28/2020_________________________________I want to start by saying thank you to Razorbill/Penguin for a review copy of A Wicked Magic. ________________________________*This review will contain spoilers* ________________________________This book has so many issues. I tried to be open minded since it is her debut novel. While I was able to trudge through the subpar writing , and cringe worthy scenes, I was not able to over look Rating: 1/5 🌟Author: Sasha Laurens Publisher: RazorbillRelease Date: 7/28/2020_________________________________I want to start by saying thank you to Razorbill/Penguin for a review copy of A Wicked Magic. ________________________________*This review will contain spoilers* ________________________________This book has so many issues. I tried to be open minded since it is her debut novel. While I was able to trudge through the subpar writing , and cringe worthy scenes, I was not able to over look other issues. While I know that the subject of trigger warnings are debatable, I feel they are very important and AWM could have benefited from them. TWs include: Suicidal ideation, suicide, self harm, abuse physical/mental, inappropriate relationship teenage female/ 30ish old male, parental figure death, and parental abandonment . In addition to the above TWings there is also possible sexual harassment. While it did not show Dan (teenage female) be harassed it is implied. The scene happens when they are at the beach around a campfire with older men. Liss (also teenage female) entices one of the men. He begins to touch her bare thigh and kiss her. Dan ask to leave and is standing away from the fire looking uncomfortable. The other men are saying things like “I thought you wanted to have a good time? What’s the problem” “ (redacted) is getting action”. A older female (who is part of the group) comes up and breaks things up. I don’t wanna know what would of happened if she didn’t. Speaking of Liss she is such a toxic person/friend. She treats Dan horribly throughout the book. She and doesn’t understand why her friend is upset with her , or is having issues. Liss thinks she did no wrong and doesn’t need to apologize. I seriously wanted to put her in her place. Dan isn’t the best of friends either. When Liss shows back up in her life she practically abandons Alexa, her new best friend. Alexa is the only thing that made this book worth sticking to the end. She was probably the only well rounded character in the entire book. That being said she did keep a “living” corpse (her aunt/guardian) in the house because she was in denial that she was dead. When her aunt was dying she was begging her not to die/ leave her. The enemy who grants wishes and twisted them, stopped her from fully dying. (How he did this while being imprisoned was never fully explained). On top of all of this the writing was cringe worthy. For example she would use the characters names multiple times in the same paragraph for example “Dan ran down the road at top speed. Dan turned the corner and ran into Johnny. She was startled , Dan collided with Johnny” (this is not from the book this is just an example) it was like the author didn’t know it was okay to say : “ Dan ran down the road at top speed. She turned the corner and ran into Johnny. She was startled , and collided with Johnny”. It was almost like she didn’t want us to forget the focus on the chapter was on Dan. I have DNFed books for the above reason. I stuck with this one because I was invested in Alexa’s story and wanted to know how it ended. However that was almost not enough. There were multiple times I almost DNFed. One being when Liss threw her self again at (redacted) but this time they were by themselves and he did engage but he stopped his advances this time. However it is implied the only reason he stopped was because Liss was crying (due to earlier events where her mother slapped her across the face multiple times after being verbally abusive) he said something along the lines of “crying kinda kills the boner”. Which implies he would have had sex with her if she wasn’t crying. He was already in a relationship with a teenager from Liss’ school but she has gone missing, so clearly he doesn’t care about the massive age difference. I think the premise of the book was awesome , however it was poorly executed. All in all I do not recommend this book. I will not be buying a finished copy for myself or my friends. I wish the author all the best and that she has a successful career.
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  • Dani (Paperback Wishes)
    January 1, 1970
    “Magic gave you gifts, but it took from you too, and although it had seemed fantastic and fun when she and Liss first tasted that world, they had learned better.”⭐⭐⭐⭐Rating: 3.5 out of 5.With my favorite character being Dan, Daniela, a young Mexican girl with depression and a love of rock music; I’d say yeah this book was kinda hard to relate to. Nope nothing to relate to here…Okay, but seriously I never read a book with my name in it when I was a teenager so this was kind of huge for me. Especi “Magic gave you gifts, but it took from you too, and although it had seemed fantastic and fun when she and Liss first tasted that world, they had learned better.”⭐⭐⭐⭐Rating: 3.5 out of 5.With my favorite character being Dan, Daniela, a young Mexican girl with depression and a love of rock music; I’d say yeah this book was kinda hard to relate to. Nope nothing to relate to here…Okay, but seriously I never read a book with my name in it when I was a teenager so this was kind of huge for me. Especially in a book so surprisingly dark and full of magic, it’s lowkey a dream- so just be happy for me. In any case, Dan is my favorite, but that’s not to say that other characters didn’t grab my attention.Liss was this character that I kept going back and forth on before deciding that nope! I don’t like her, then changing my mind again. I felt for her, but then she would say something super toxic or just selfish. She’s definitely a character that’s meant to grate on you though. Honestly, they all are written to be flawed in their own ways. But it was really interesting to read through the shattered pieces of Liss and Dan’s friendship. It’s this really broken dynamic that you can’t decide whether if it’s better that way or not. Alexis was also a character I went back and forth on. I wanted so badly for Liss and Dan to be friends again and I didn’t always trust Alexis at first. But she quickly became one of the most interesting characters in the book. Together, the three of them made a pretty messy, but awesome witch gang. And Domino was incredibly entertaining.Speaking of Alexis, dang this book can get pretty scary. I guess I was expecting this book to be more of a cutesy magical quirky fun times. Nope! This book had me quaking at times. I know I’m just a big scaredy cat, but I had to actually turn on the lights to read this book. When it said a “wicked magic” she meant it! Part of it is the descriptions of the setting. Northern California isn’t exactly my definition of scary, but the writing in this book is so atmospheric and it just pulls you in. The book is so frank with the reader at times and tragically vague at others. It really pins down ordinary, but unsettling things and capitalizes on them. It just makes things uncertain and creepy. I will officially never go jogging at night because I’m officially scared of pavement.Also, this book gets very dark in it’s subject matter as well. I got BIG triggered in this book, which I don’t consider that big of a deal, but I will be adding some Trigger Warnings at the bottom for those of y’all who may need them. Don’t get caught slipping like me, lol. But this book just goes places that are very true to the experience of so many teens and are just as disquieting as the magical horrors at play.I’ll also say that this book had a super slow start for me, but really picked up about half-way through and became very interesting after that. Basically, as soon as people start actually communicating with each other, lol. The plot really starts to roll itself out.TL;DR: Part teen horror and part girl gang adventure, this book frights and excites and frights some more. The characters are messy and complex, plus the magic just makes things worse, and in the end- isn’t the real magic the friends we made along the way?Trigger Warnings (take care lovelies): mentions of domestic abuse, sexual harassment against teen girls, self-harm, depression.E-galley provided by the author, Penguin Group, and Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. All quotations and opinions are based off an uncorrected proof.
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  • Sophie M
    January 1, 1970
    I received A Wicked Magic by Sasha Laurens for free by the author and the publisher Razorbill in exchange for an honest review. It will be published on the 28th July 2020! Content/Trigger Warnings: self harm/ anxiety / depression / drug use / brief mention of a relationship between a 17 year old & 31 year old. In A Wicked Magic by Sasha Laurens we join our protagonists, Dan & Liss, as they find a book of magic and find a spell that will turn them into witches. However, they soon realise that mag I received A Wicked Magic by Sasha Laurens for free by the author and the publisher Razorbill in exchange for an honest review. It will be published on the 28th July 2020! Content/Trigger Warnings: self harm/ anxiety / depression / drug use / brief mention of a relationship between a 17 year old & 31 year old. In A Wicked Magic by Sasha Laurens we join our protagonists, Dan & Liss, as they find a book of magic and find a spell that will turn them into witches. However, they soon realise that magic comes with a steep price when a spell goes awry and Liss' boyfriend gets taken by a horrific creature they accidentally conjured. The police have given up the case believing him to just be another runaway, but when more kids start going mysteriously missing, the girls know that they are the only ones who'll be able to save them. I thought this was a really intriguing concept and I can definitely see why it's been likened to the Chilling Adventures of Sabrina! It's a dark fantasy involving witches that doesn't shy away from heavy and important subjects. Another amazing show that this book reminded me of was Charmed and I absolutely loved that. Three young amateur witches who get their spells from a special book and go on magical adventures..right! Dan and Liss are practically two halves of a whole - the best of friends until the spell that goes wrong. Now they're not speaking, Dan has sworn off of magic whereas Liss craves magic like a drug. Dan is the more anxious one of the two and the guilt from what happened is weighing heavy on her shoulders. She's got a new best friend, Alexa, and she wants to keep her as far away from the magic world as possible - in fact she wants to forget that magic exists entirely but this will prove harder than it looks. Whereas Liss is determined to do everything in her power to get her boyfriend back. She's strategic, self obsessed and always has a plan for every situation but under the surface we see that there is also so much more to her. Neither of these girls have had an easy life and I really liked that the book showcased that they are young and flawed, they're nowhere near perfect, they're genuine teenage girls. The magic system throughout the book was unique and enjoyable. There are very interesting differences between the types of witches in the book. For example, Dan & Liss are 'naive witches' as they performed a spell to give them magic rather than inheriting and practising magic like the 'wardens'. The story has a medium pace and is an easy read, I got halfway through without realising! Plus I really enjoyed the feminist themes, women empowerment and theme of friendship showcased throughout the book! It is a great story for older teens and YA readers. A story of friendship, fixing what's broken and takes the idiom "be careful what you wish for" to the next level!
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  • Paige Green
    January 1, 1970
    Disclaimer: I received this e-arc from the publisher. Thanks! All opinions are my own.Book: A Wicked MagicAuthor: Sasha LaurensBook Series: StandaloneRating: 3/5Recommended For...: fantasy, ya, magicPublication Date: July 28, 2020Genre: YA FantasyRecommended Age: 16+ (slight romance, violence, death, slight gore)Publisher: RazorbillPages: 368Synopsis: Dan and Liss are witches. The Black Book granted them that power. Harnessing that power feels good, especially when everything in their lives make Disclaimer: I received this e-arc from the publisher. Thanks! All opinions are my own.Book: A Wicked MagicAuthor: Sasha LaurensBook Series: StandaloneRating: 3/5Recommended For...: fantasy, ya, magicPublication Date: July 28, 2020Genre: YA FantasyRecommended Age: 16+ (slight romance, violence, death, slight gore)Publisher: RazorbillPages: 368Synopsis: Dan and Liss are witches. The Black Book granted them that power. Harnessing that power feels good, especially when everything in their lives makes them feel powerless.During a spell gone wrong, Liss's boyfriend is snatched away by an evil entity and presumed dead. Dan and Liss's friendship dies that night, too. How can they practice magic after the darkness that they conjured?Months later, Liss discovers that her boyfriend is alive, trapped underground in the grips of an ancient force. She must save him, and she needs Dan and the power of The Black Book to do so. Dan is quickly sucked back into Liss's orbit and pushes away her best friend, Alexa. But Alexa has some big secrets she's hiding and her own unique magical disaster to deal with.When another teenager disappears, the girls know it's no coincidence. What greedy magic have they awakened? And what does it want with these teens it has stolen?Set in the atmospheric wilds of California's northern coast, Sasha Laurens's thrilling debut novel is about the complications of friendship, how to take back power, and how to embrace the darkness that lives within us all.Review: Overall, this is a good book. The book had a lot of good character development and the world building was well done. The book was also wrote with a good atmosphere. The book had this creepy vibe throughout it and I think it fit well for the story. The book also had a decent plot.However, I didn’t like the switching POVs and I think the book would have been better with just one. I think the ending battle was weirdly wrote and it bored me a bit. The pacing of this book is super slow. Also, I got super mad at this book because there is a character who is, in my mind, queer but the author doesn’t write them that way. The book felt weird and I didn’t connect with it at all.Verdict: It was good, just not for me.
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  • Sarah
    January 1, 1970
    A Wicked Magic is a story of two best friends who find a mysterious book containing a spell that transforms them into witches. It all seems like fun and games until one night they cast a spell and Liss’s boyfriend gets taken. This causes Liss and Dan’s friendship to fall apart, as Liss is desperately trying to find a spell to save her boyfriend but Dan wants nothing to do with magic. When Liss discovers a spell that helps her speak to her boyfriend, she draws Dan back into the world of witchery A Wicked Magic is a story of two best friends who find a mysterious book containing a spell that transforms them into witches. It all seems like fun and games until one night they cast a spell and Liss’s boyfriend gets taken. This causes Liss and Dan’s friendship to fall apart, as Liss is desperately trying to find a spell to save her boyfriend but Dan wants nothing to do with magic. When Liss discovers a spell that helps her speak to her boyfriend, she draws Dan back into the world of witchery in hopes that they can fix their mistake. Before that can happen, the characters must first overcome their differences and face their own inner demons.The book focuses around Dan, Liss, and Alexa. Dan and Liss are ex-best friends, and Alexa is Dan’s current best friend who recently moved to their small town in Northern California. I didn’t really connect with the characters until close to the end. I began to like them more as they started to overcome the things that were holding them back. I did really love Domino, but he wasn’t in the story as much as I would have enjoyed.It took me a little while to get into this book. The beginning included a lot of background story with flashbacks and not as much magic as I wanted. About halfway through, the story started to pick up as more mysterious things started to happen. I really began to get into the story and couldn’t wait to see what happened next. This is when the magic started to pick up and become more of a focus, which is what I was waiting for. I will admit I was disappointed in the final showdown with the villain, which felt too rushed and almost easy. I thought for sure something would go wrong to make it more interesting, but I was left wanting. A Wicked Magic is a witchy story with some similar vibes to The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, although it takes some time to get to that point. The majority of the book felt more like a contemporary with a lot of hard hitting topics than it did a fantasy or thriller. I wish that there had been more magic from the beginning, but once it got going I was happy with it. Overall, I did enjoy this debut novel by Sasha Laurens, and I hope to read more from her in the future.Thank you so much to Penguin Teen and NetGalley for the chance to read and review this book.Content warning: self harm and suicidal thoughts
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  • Elisa (The Overflowing Bookshelf)
    January 1, 1970
    If you’re looking for a spooky read involving modern witches and ancient demons, then look no further! Sasha Laurens’s debut novel, A Wicked Magic, is a spell-binding YA fantasy-thriller that is out today that will have you wrapped up in every twist and turn.Set in the wilderness of California's northern coast, this novel has all the witchy/spooky vibes any reader would want in a book about self-made witches. The plot was engaging and will keep readers intrigued as to what will happen next! Addi If you’re looking for a spooky read involving modern witches and ancient demons, then look no further! Sasha Laurens’s debut novel, A Wicked Magic, is a spell-binding YA fantasy-thriller that is out today that will have you wrapped up in every twist and turn.Set in the wilderness of California's northern coast, this novel has all the witchy/spooky vibes any reader would want in a book about self-made witches. The plot was engaging and will keep readers intrigued as to what will happen next! Additionally, the novel wraps up really nicely and all the loose ends get tied up at the conclusion of the book. However, Laurens hits upon dark topics, including self-harm, suicide, mental health issues, and violence. While it never felt too forced or excessive, there are some major trigger warnings for this book!Being a young adult book, there was an overarching theme of friendship and the relationships between Dan, Liss, and Alexa. The mending of these girls’ friendships was really well written in that it wasn’t just “forgive and forget”. Liss and Dan had to work to gain each others’ trust back as well and work through their own demons. Even Alexa had her own issues to grapple while trying to maintain her friendship with Dan. However, this novel shows that the bonds of friendship are very hard to truly break and how through hardship, true friends can find their way back to one another.I am not someone who reads a lot of thrillers, but I found this book to be a great read! Fans of Ninth House or The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina would enjoy this stand-alone and become entranced by this stunning debut!*I received an ARC from Penguin Teen in exchange for my honest opinion.
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  • Susan
    January 1, 1970
    link: Welp. It was bound to happen. And Now It Has... In which case Becky and I go off the rails in completely different directions. Just guess who threw A Wick Magic In The Great Salt Lake.Full Review at Novellives.Com link: Welp. It was bound to happen. And Now It Has... In which case Becky and I go off the rails in completely different directions. Just guess who threw A Wick Magic In The Great Salt Lake.Full Review at Novellives.Com
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  • CR
    January 1, 1970
    I’m so disappointed ☹️ I was so excited to read this and then it was just so meh 😒. I love stories about witches and 😩 I was so happy to get this one. But sadly it just didn’t grab me at all. The writing seemed all over the place and the characters just weren’t fully formed. The magic was interesting but not enough to keep me reading.
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  • Evelyn
    January 1, 1970
    This booksurprised me by how much I enjoyed it!Review on blog! This booksurprised me by how much I enjoyed it!Review on blog!
  • Dark Heart Books
    January 1, 1970
    A Wicked Magic is one of those books that I enjoyed whilst I was reading it, but when I was done – I kept thinking about it. First of all, I’ve noticed that there seems to be a new trend of ‘witchy girl gang’ books that’s happened throughout the last year or so – AND I AM LIVING FOR IT! And honestly, despite the title and the blurb on the back, A Wicked Magic is less about magic and more about the complexities of female friendship. That’s not to say that there isn’t magic – of course there is! B A Wicked Magic is one of those books that I enjoyed whilst I was reading it, but when I was done – I kept thinking about it. First of all, I’ve noticed that there seems to be a new trend of ‘witchy girl gang’ books that’s happened throughout the last year or so – AND I AM LIVING FOR IT! And honestly, despite the title and the blurb on the back, A Wicked Magic is less about magic and more about the complexities of female friendship. That’s not to say that there isn’t magic – of course there is! But instead of the main focus being on the magic at hand, it’s instead on the girls who wield that magic and their inner thoughts, feelings and flaws. It’s a really subtle and subversive story and honestly, it was super refreshing. I do LOVE the witchy girl gang sub-genre, but so many of them merely hint at the female friendships, or only give us a surface level exposé on them. In A Wicked Magic we’re shown all the flaws and crappy parts of being human that are usually left out of other stories, for whatever reason. I have to praise Laurens as she gives us some very messy characters that feel 100% real. Other things I really enjoyed about A Wicked Magic were the portrayals of both healthy and unhealthy ways to deal with grief, depression, low self-esteem and general negative situations. Although many weren’t developed to any great depths (such as the self-harming and parental neglect) there was enough of it present to help justify some of the characters actions, behaviours and thoughts. Although the blurb will have you thinking this is a perfect Halloween read (and it would be!) I’d feel like I was misleading you if I didn’t mention that the book also heavily deals with the mental health of each girl and how they cope with what their teenage life throws at them.I loved how magic has a cost in this book, and that it just wasn’t the answer to everything – in fact sometimes it’s exactly the wrong thing. But – as many of you who’ve been with me for a while know – I don’t believe in perfect books, and whilst I did give A Wicked Magic 5 stars, it’s not perfect.My biggest gripe with A Wicked Magic was the main antagonist. The big bad. The boss battle. It was all a bit…lame. Which is shit cos the rest of the book was so excellent. It was just…over too quickly. Another issue was the pacing at times - especially in the beginning. The constant flashbacks could be a problem for a lot of people too - depends on what kind of reader you are. But ultimately the pros WAY outweigh the cons and I’d highly recommend A Wicked Magic for readers who want a complex deep-dive into friendships and the teenage human condition, as well as those who want a bit of a witchy vibe!
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  • E.B.
    January 1, 1970
    YAY SASHA THIS BOOK IS SO GOOD
  • Adalee Gellar
    January 1, 1970
    I got my hands on an Advanced Reader Copy of this book and I will say it is quite a read! The author shows some great skill with character and relationship building throughout the story. She paints a realistic world wherein the fantastical elements bolster the human story rather than carry the entire plot. At first I was concerned she was leaning into character tropes common in YA fiction but her deft storytelling shifted these initially stereotypical roles into unique and beautiful characters. I got my hands on an Advanced Reader Copy of this book and I will say it is quite a read! The author shows some great skill with character and relationship building throughout the story. She paints a realistic world wherein the fantastical elements bolster the human story rather than carry the entire plot. At first I was concerned she was leaning into character tropes common in YA fiction but her deft storytelling shifted these initially stereotypical roles into unique and beautiful characters. The story also has some nice twists that stave off predictability. A book well worth a read.
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  • Laura Rueckert
    January 1, 1970
    I really enjoyed this book, full of messy characters who felt very real. I couldn’t help but care about and root for them! Cherry on top – the cover is absolutely amazing!
  • Bri Hotchksis
    January 1, 1970
    Trigger CityI feel that the first thing I should touch upon is the large number of triggers that you are faced with time and time again throughout the entire book. I personally love a book that pushes the limits of comfort to the far edges so that the imitation of life is more believable and heartfelt. If I’m feeling super uncomfortable when reading a book, I know that the author truly understands that aspect of life and has lived those experiences. That’s the reason why I usually don’t include Trigger CityI feel that the first thing I should touch upon is the large number of triggers that you are faced with time and time again throughout the entire book. I personally love a book that pushes the limits of comfort to the far edges so that the imitation of life is more believable and heartfelt. If I’m feeling super uncomfortable when reading a book, I know that the author truly understands that aspect of life and has lived those experiences. That’s the reason why I usually don’t include trigger warnings in my book reviews unless requested by the author/ company I’m writing the review. With A Wicked Magic, there were so many trigger points that I felt that it needed to be stated. So the first thing you’re hit with is deep depression and suicidal thoughts/ tendencies. Most of the characters are hit by this depression (some harder than others) and the accuracy of the depressed feelings even hit me hard enough to remember those dark moments in my life when the same thoughts would cross my mind. That’s never really happened to me before in a book so I was pleasantly surprised. Yes, pleasantly because to be able to evoke those feelings in me is a hard task to accomplish. Some other intense triggers would be cutting, abusive parents, gore, stronger sexual situations than I’ve seen in most YA books, promiscuity, and actual suicide. Even abortion was touched upon in this one. Most of these themes are revisited multiple times throughout the story-line, so if you’re extremely sensitive or raw to any of these situations, you may want to hold off on reading this book Key Highlights of the Book: Profanity. Profanity. Profanity. Oh yes! These teenagers swear, and they do it so well. It’s so refreshing! I have the biggest potty mouth and have had one since my teenage years, so it was so good to see teens cussing up a storm in this book. These weren’t little swears such as the occasional “damn it or hell”, oh no, you were getting the big boy swears all over the place. I never thought I would be this excited to read a precisely placed “F-Bomb” in a YA novel, but it seemed to be exactly what I needed. It made their teenage dramas feel so real. The gore. The descriptions of the decaying bodies and their smells were to die for. Again, the pun was sooooo intended. I’m a big horror movie buff, and gore is a must for me in all of them. It can’t be that cheesy gore where everything is copious amounts of blood and guts strewn all over the place. No, it has to make me think that if I was to walk upon a dead body, that’s what it would look like. And considering that I’ve seen my share of decaying human flesh, I can say that A Wicked Magic hit the decomposition mark. The authenticity of the teenage plight was unmatched. I literally felt like I was in high-school all over again. Having meaningless arguments with my friends that felt like the end of the world at the time, unnecessary thoughts of self-hate, and everything else that comes along with being a hormonal teen. I know that a lot of people complain about YA being too childish but damn it that’s what being a Young Adult is all about. Just because you’re 17 or 18 doesn’t mean you don’t have a bit of that immaturity that comes from your adolescent and prepubescent years in you still. Everything is still so heartfelt and the worst, and you don’t rationalize things as maturely as you would hope for that age. So, naturally, you are bound to fall back into the naivety every once in a while. This book didn’t spare our teens from being real teens. I loved that.With that being said, I do feel like some of the drama was a bit drawn out and repetitive. It was almost to the point of an eye-roll while yelling at the paragraph that was frustrating you. If unnecessary drama and nasty, teenage attributes easily irritate you, then you will find yourself grinding your teeth at a lot of the situations that happen with the characters. But, again, for me, that’s what made them so believable… they behaved EXACTLY as a kid that age would. Overall…I would say that this book had a great story-line that was easy to follow. This is the first time I was “triggered” in a book and that’s what actually made it a champion novel. All in all, this book scores high in the B+S Book Review Archives. Read the full review at Books and Shadows: https://booksandshadows.com/a-wicked-...
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