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The Apprentice Witch

Cover: 'The Apprentice Witch'

Staff Review: "The Apprentice Witch" by James Nicol

★★★★★

Sneaking out of her grandmother’s house early in the morning, young Arianwyn Gribble believes she is ready to become a full-fledged witch and take the Civil Witchcraft Authority’s evaluation and receive an assignment to serve her community. But then she loses her focus during the exam, the evaluation gauge supposedly malfunctions, and she is disappointingly given the rank of apprentice witch (showing promise but not yet at the full height of her powers), and assigned to the small, boring town of Lull. She soon finds, however,  that much is afoot in the town of Lull and beyond. There are increasingly more dangerous patches of hex and strange creatures and spirits in the woods bent on destruction and harm. To add to this, Arianwyn’s archrival, Gimma, who passed the witch’s evaluation exam, shows up in town, boards with her, and causes all kinds of trouble. This tween fantasy is charming and a lot of fun in every way. The characterizations are strong and interesting and there’s a lot happening in this fully-fleshed-out fantasy that’s a delight to read. I will be eagerly awaiting the sequel, A Witch Alone, for more of Arianwyn’s adventures.  

Audience: children | Genre: fiction

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