Yo, I swear Jessica Spotswood must have read my brain or something, because you guys alternate fantasy history about the Salem Witch Trials is EXACTLY the sort of book I want to read and what is delivered by Born Wicked — Spotswood’s debut novel and the first of a trilogy —The Cahill Witch Chronicles.
When Cate Cahill’s mother dies, she swears to protect her sisters. You see, Cate and her sisters Tess and Maura are witches. Being a witch is outlawed by the patriarchal society in which they live which is run by a powerful group of religious men known as The Brotherhood. Not to mention, Cate has to choose between marriage and joining the Sisterhood by her birthday which is in six months. Girl can’t catch a break.
OMG. YOU GUYS. YOU GUYS. I just want to wave my arms around and yell about all of the cool things involved in Jessica Spotswood’s world building within Born Wicked. The alternate history is legit. I mean, I’m the kid that perked up in history class. So I just love Born Wicked’s re-imagining of the past. I loved how Spotswood shows the issue of patriarchy and how it totally sucks to be subjugated by men who are scared of women.
And yo, I fricken LOVED Cate Cahill. I loved how she always has her sisters’ backs. How she tries desperately to do the right thing. How she sacrifices for her sisters, even though Maura is too much of a brat to appreciate it. ALSO Cate’s feelings for the wrong boy — Finn Belastra? SWOON CITY!! Seriously slow burn is going on here. And you guys we get my favorite thing to read — seeing Cate’s feelings evolve and change for Finn, when she notices she has a crush and just a touch on the arm is electrifying. Meltypants. That is all. Meltypants.
I had the pleasure of listening to Born Wicked by Jessica Spotswood on audiobook. It is produced by Penguin Audio and is narrated by Nicole Sudhaus and is 8 hours and 55 minutes unabridged. Nicole Sudhaus has a very feminine, soft voice which I wasn’t in love with at first. HOWEVER, it actually really works for the story and sounds like you’d expect a proper young lady from early American history recounting her story to sound.
Disclosure: Received for review from the publisher.