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Witch Finder
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Friday, November 8, 2013

Blythewood by Carol Goodman

Title: Blythewood
Author: Carol Goodman
Type: Young Adult
Genre: Fantasy
Tea: Strawberry Rose Champagne Oolong from Teavana. Has hints of other teas that you love, but brings its own twist entirely.
Rating: 5 out of 5.

Oh Carol Goodman, you are a genius. I always thought so, but you solidified this opinion with Blythewood. Having been an avid Carol Goodman fan for years I couldn't wait to get my hands on Blythewood, and I was not disappointed!

Blythewood has aspects of two of my favorite series, Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling and the Gemma Doyle trilogy by Libba Bray, but Ms. Goodman made this world entirely her own. I've been looking for a series to love as much as those and I think I found it here.

Blythewood is a mysterious boarding school that is not quite what it seems. Our main character, Avaline, discovers the school and she, herself, are so much more. This book is full of excitement, fairy tales, mysteries and page turning twists.

Avaline is different than the whiny female main characters that are often seen in today's young adult novels. She is strong, determined and smart. She has a mystery to solve and she does just that. She is surrounded by a smart, strong group of friends. These are not often seen in young adult novels today either. I applaud Ms. Goodman on her characterization, not just of the students, but of the faculty and townspeople. There are so many little things mentioned that I just want to learn the answer to, but sadly must wait! Also the villain is entirely unique and I had no idea what was going to happen.

I've read books dealing with angels/fallen angels before, but they were handled very poorly, to the point where I couldn't finish the novel (the Fallen series by Lauren Kate being a prime example). At first I was leery seeing they were in Blythewood, due to my former disappointment, but Ms. Goodman handled them flawlessly! They're strong and beautiful characters. And the whole novel wasn't about a girl being ridiculously obsessed with an unattainable boy. Yes, there is a love story, but there is so much more. And the love story in this novel is more feasible and easier to relate to.

Being very interested in folklore and the Fae, this story was perfect for me. This novel has nuances of Ms. Goodman's adult novels, making it a great crossover novel, and a great introduction for new fans! I absolutely cannot wait for the next book and hope that I won't have to wait long!

Thank you Carol Goodman for finally writing the young adult novel I've been searching for.

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