Witchling (Curse of Kin #1) by Ari Harper
Released: November 29th 2012
Publisher: Lycaon/Breathless Press
Nera is a normal teenage girl living in Ireland-or so she thought. Her world is forever changed when she discovers that she is descended from a long line of witches. To her horror she finds she is the one that is supposed to stop the curse that has taken the life of every girl before her. As if that isn't enough, she must learn to use magic and her trainer is a man named Bones. He is the son of Mari, Queen of the Witches, and a god. It is Bones that has been entrusted to teach her the skills she needs to stay alive, which wouldn't be so bad if he didn't have an uncanny knack for pushing her buttons. Can Nera learn what she needs while staying immune to the charms of the man that gets under her skin at every opportunity?
Excerpt:I loved my early morning route, peaceful and calming with few people around. Brie got the spooks going through the forest, but to me it was the best way to clear my head and sort through my issues. My brain always worked better when I was out by myself. Running always had a calming effect on me anyway, and Hugo would go with me anywhere.
I still had doubts about what Jasper had told me but so much of it was starting to make sense. But then again, so much didn’t. How could I explain the powers that I already knew I had? God, it was just so weird. Too much information at one time—especially weird information!
I rounded the bend heading to Widows Lake, and the forest seemed to cool off. I slowed down to get a quick look around, but saw nothing that could account for the sudden case of jitters. Just in case, I upped my speed again. As I got closer to the lake, I could see a mist hovering over the water and the daylight faded, an unnatural darkness descending around me.
Hugo pulled up short at the edge of the lake, and a low rumble came from deep in his big chest.
“Whoa, boy, what is it?” I grabbed at his collar.
The mist swirled closer, and the light sky darkened even more. There was a strange hum in the air. Hugo’s ears flattened against his head, and his hackles went up. I started to get spooked.
No one answered. The hum got louder and closer. The air chilled, and I tried to drag Hugo from the lake. “Come on, Hugo, let’s go.” Panic was starting to set in.
His growl deepened. He pulled away from me and began to pace back and forth at the edge of the mist.
“Hugo, let’s go!” I cried and grabbed him again, trying harder to get him away, but he was standing his ground, frozen in place.
“Who are you? What do you want?” I yelled out.
“I want you, Nera,” a strange voice whispered in the fog. “You belong to me.”
About the Author
Ari Harper never wanted to grow up.
To offset the limitations of aging ungracefully, she created her own set of unique worlds where she can be and do whatever she wants.
Gods, witches and demons surround Ari while she spins her magic, doing mainly what they tell her to do. Given a chance, she prefers to work amongst chaos, which is good because she is constantly surrounded by children, all clamoring for attention. Some of them end up in her stories, some of them even get to die grisly deaths or be cast away to another realm.
Nera wants to believe she's a normal teen living and going to school in Ireland. The reader knows from the opening scene when she suffers a peculiar attack that normal may not be the best word to associate with this girl. Along with her best friends Brie and Sully, they seek help from Nera's Uncle Jasper. Her Uncle has some very interesting news to share with his niece about the family and Nera discovers she has never been normal.
Decades of family secrets, gods and goddesses, Wiccan, telekinesis, sword play, and more can be found within the pages of Ari Harper's Witchling, the first book of the Curse of Kin YA series. Nera is a likable character, strong, opinionated and yet realistically immature when suddenly faced with an unknown paranormal truth about herself and secretive family history. Her Uncle Jasper is a patient man, always soothing her and trying to help. Her parents are supportive and present which is always refreshing in YA. Her younger brother Roman is a cute five year old and he's very aware for his age. It took a while to like Brian "Bones" as Nera's 'protector' and teacher.
There is an expansive family legacy involving a goddess, an evil witch, an old curse and the hope of someone strong enough to break the curse. I can't go into specifics and spoil the fun for readers. While reading I did have questions about the fantastical aspect of the tale and couldn't help noting why there was no mention of the towns people noticing a very long-time resident in their midst. Perhaps there was some spell cast which will be explained in the series. The story keeps the reader involved and Nera's narration always keeps us informed. For a paranormal I did think the pacing might move a bit quicker but since this is the first book in a series I figured a foundation had to be set, especially when much of the story centered around Nera accepting and then learning about her new self and role.
Witchling is a fun, involved YA novel and fans of the paranormal genre looking for a new story featuring witches may want to look into this title.
Rating: 3 I liked it.
This cover gets an "all right" from me. I've seen this stock art photo on other covers so I find it a bit overused.
I received a promotional copy in return for my honest review during a book tour.