Friday, November 11, 2011

It Takes A Witch-Heather Blake

It Takes A Witch

Heather Blake

Obsidian, Jan 3 2012, $7.99

ISBN: 9780451235527

Enchanted Village in Salem, Massachusetts is a tourist attraction in which practitioners of the Craft (witches) can practice their skills without mortals knowing it. If a witch tells a mortal what she is, she loses her Crafty power.

The latest residents in the villahe are the Merriweather sisters (Darcy and Harper) of Ohio, who never knew they possessed such power until their Aunt Velma told them three weeks ago. They came to Salem to learn how to use the craft. Darcy settles in her new home’ and starts to adjust to the paradigm switch and finally begins moving past the betrayal of her ex husband. However, all is not well in the bucolic village because a pickpocket is on the loose; word of mouth will destroy the tourist trade if this felon is not stopped soonest. Matters turn ugly when Darcy discovers the body of wannabe witch Alexandra Shipley who believed she was a Crafter. Refusing to leave it to the incompetent village police after meeting with these bumblers, Darcy investigates the homicide because Aunt Velma’s beau has been arrested; everyone except the cops and the killer knows she is innocent. In the process she learns more about her powers and the limitations of the village rules especially when she breaks one.

Although all the typical elements of an amateur sleuth urban fantasy (including romance) is in this fine tale, readers will believe It Takes a Witch is a brisk paranormal mystery. The Enchanted Village lives up to its name as a sort bewitching tourist attraction (think Disneyland). Darcy adjusts too easily to her new world order of granting wishes, but fans will enjoy her investigation as Heather Blake casts a spell on her audience.

Harriet Klausner

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