Thursday, May 7, 2015

Review: The Silver Witch by Paula Brackston

Title: The Silver Witch
Author: Paula Brackston
Format: Hardcover
Publisher: Thomas Dunne Books
Publish Date: April 21, 2015
Source: I received a copy from the publisher; however, this did not affect my review.

What's the Story?:

From "A year after her husband’s sudden death, ceramic artist Tilda Fordwells finally moves into the secluded Welsh cottage that was to be their new home. She hopes that the tranquil surroundings will help ease her grief, and lessen her disturbing visions of Mat’s death. Instead, the lake in the valley below her cottage seems to spark something dormant in her – a sensitivity, and a power of some sort. Animals are drawn to her, electricity shorts out when she’s near, and strangest of all, she sees a new vision; a boatful of ancient people approaching her across the water.

On this same lake in Celtic times lived Seren, a witch and shaman. She was respected but feared, kept separate from the community for her strange looks. When a vision came to her of the Prince amid a nest of vipers she warned of betrayal from one of his own. Prince Brynach both loved and revered her, but could not believe someone close to him wished him harm, even as the danger grew.

In her own time, Tilda’s grief begins to fade beside her newfound powers and a fresh love. When she explores the lake’s ancient magic and her own she discovers Seren, the woman in her vision of the boat. Their two lives strangely mirror each others, suggesting a strong connection between the women. As Tilda comes under threat from a dark power, one reminiscent of Seren’s prophecy, she must rely on Seren and ancient magic if death and disaster are not to shatter her life once more."

My Two Cents:

When Tilda moves to the small cottage on a Welsh lake that she and her husband were supposed to live in before he passed away suddenly, she feels like maybe she is working towards closure with dealing with her husband's death. What she finds is that there is a whole new world awaiting her that will shock and surprise. Brackston's latest offering has a heavy dose of magical realism that pulled me in. This is another one of her Witch books that I ate up

Tilda is definitely an interesting character to me. She starts the book being very upset about her young husband's untimely death and rightfully so. She pushes away anyone that gets too close and seems to want to shut herself away from the world. Very quickly, she realizes that this new cottage on a lake may hold the key to showing her who she actually is and that she can have a life after her husband. A lot of the book focuses on her self realization and she goes from being totally unaware of her and the power of the past that she holds to realizing that things are not always as they seem. I really enjoyed following her journey!

Tilda is not the only character in the book. The book is also told from the perspective of Seren, a Celtic healer and witch who lives in the past. Tilda and And Seren will be connected in ways that neither one can imagine. Although I enjoyed reading about Tilda's journey, I really enjoyed the writing of Seren's sections a little bit better as we get a first person point of view of her life back in the 900s. Tilda's sections are told from the third person present point of view which almost made me feel that we were being held at arms length as readers. The book started out being fast paced but as the book went on, I did think it lost a little bit of momentum but not enough to take away too much for my enjoyment of the book.



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