March 27, 2012

Review: Spell Bound kept me captivated...

Rachel Hawkins is the queen of snarky dialogue. I wish I could make a crown for her to wear because she deserves it. I will miss Sophie Mercer and all of her Sophieisms, but at the end of this review I share a few of my favorites from the final installment of her journey.

If you have not picked up the Hex Hall series you really should because it is full of magic, kissing, swords, battles, and friendship. 

Summary (from book jacket):

Talk about terrible timing…

Just as Sophie Mercer has come to accept her extraordinary magical powers as a demon, the Prodigium Council strips them away. With her powers locked inside her, Sophie is defenseless, alone, and at the mercy of her sworn enemies—the Brannicks, a family of warrior women who hunt down the Prodigium.
Or at least that’s what Sophie thinks, until she makes a surprising discovery. The Brannicks know an epic war is coming, and they believe Sophie is the only one powerful enough to stop the world from ending. But without her magic, Sophie isn’t so sure.

The only known spell that can help Sophie regain her magic is at Hex Hall—the place where it all began, and now the headquarters of the evil Casnoffs. Together with her best friend, the vampire Jenna; her boyfriend, Archer; her fiancĂ©, Cal (yeah, her love life is complicated); and a ghost for a sidekick, Sophie must battle an army of demons. But even with her friends at her side, the fate of all Prodigium rests on her shoulders alone.

Sophie’s bound for one hell of a ride…Can she get her powers back before it’s too late?

My Thoughts:

Spell Bound has several things I love in a witchy novel – strong plot, clever dialogue, and an interesting use of magic. This series, not just this one novel, fits the bill, and it is the reason that I love getting my “hex on” while reading them.

The strong plot has it all – magic, demons, kissing, oh my! Oh, and there’s a battle as well. But really, the author ends the novel in the only logical way that she could, and since we are discussing a battle, there is a high price to be paid, so be ready for it. I wasn’t, but I am okay with the decision. But the one thing that Hawkins shows her strength as a writer is how she concludes her chapters. The final page/ paragraph/sentence moves the plot along quickly, leaving readers hungry for more.

Oh Sophie Mercer, how I love your dialogue, let me count the ways…No really, I do. I found so many amazing quotes in this novel that I finally started making a list – one that you will find at the end of this review. The clever dialogue award definitely goes to Rachel Hawkins. She is a master of it, and of course she gives Sophie the best lines consistently throughout the series. There were tense elements in the novel, moments that were not allowed to become too intense with that dialogue.

Finally, I really love the way this series incorporates the use of magic. I have stated over and over that I love a good witchy read, but I also love when authors develop interesting ideas for characters to use magic. This is true in this series, consistently. That is about all I can say for this particular installment without ruining the plot. But trust me…it’s good.

Reminiscent of Harry Potter - “I open at the close” – Hawkins has made a fitting conclusion to Sophie’s journey at Hex Hall. There are moments that will make you laugh, cry, and surprise. Hawkins made a clever move with taking readers back to Hex Hall, where it all began. It brought closure to the story in a way that I don’t feel would have happened in any other setting.  

A few of my favorite Sophieisms in this novel:
  • “I was normal, I reminded myself. Just a regular seventeen-year-old girl, about to face against a werewolf with nothing more than…Okay, well, I did have a big-ass sword and a ghost. That had to count for something.” (8)
  • “I’d gotten my butt handed to me by a sixth grader? That was embarrassing. Then the cold metal at my neck reminded me this particular sixth grader had a knife.” (12)
  • “No way had I survived demon attacks, and ghoul duels, and demonglass explosions to end up murdered by Raggedy Ann.” (16)
  • “Okay. Sophie Awesome Sparkle-Princess it is.” (70)

And that’s all folks – don’t want to spoil the entire book, and besides, I’m sure Rachel Hawkins would really like for you to buy this book so she can afford for her son to take a trip one day to find Big Foot. But really, you should buy the book because it is worth every single page.

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