Happy Monday! Three new books come out tomorrow. They are Fatal Frost by Karen MacInerney, The Christmas Town by Donna VanLiere, and A Royal Christmas Wedding by Rachel Hauck. If you enjoy Christmas books (fiction and non-fiction), you should check out The Book Club Network. There are some wonderful people on this site. There is one group that gets together once a month to sign up for new books (to read and review). I hope you will look into it.
Putting on the Witch by Jim and Joyce Lavene is the third book in A Retired Witches Mystery series. Molly, Elsie, and Olivia (who is a ghost) are upset when Dorothy’s father, Drago Rasmun shows up. They were hoping he would not find out about Dorothy until they had given her more training. Dorothy Lane is a librarian and only recently discovered her witchy background and legacy. The three elder witches are afraid that Drago will lure Dorothy to the dark side. Brian Fuller, Dorothy’s boyfriend, is having a birthday. His parents are throwing a ball in his honor. Brian does not wish to attend (he prefers to avoid his parents). Unfortunately, Brian is outvoted. The ladies are dying for a chance to dress up and see the Fuller home (which is in a secret location). Olivia is a bit miffed. The others tell her that she cannot attend (I do not think this will stop her). The Witches Council is against ghosts and would not hesitate to banish her for good. The others get glammed up (magically) and wait for the car to take them to the secret location. They are having a good time until they discover the body of Makaleigh Veazy, a witches’ council member, stabbed in the back. The council locks down the house for twenty-four hours and calls forth Antonio de Santiago, the witchfinder. Antonio was an original member of the Spanish inquisition and has been kept a prisoner (in a wall) by the council all these years. Antonio is very old school (he believes in intense questioning in a dungeon). Molly (and the others) decide to teach Antonio modern forensics and investigative techniques. Will they be able to find the killer before the guests are allowed to leave? The witches are in for a busy twenty-four hours and the murder is just the beginning of their troubles.
Putting on the Witch was an entertaining story. I did feel that there was a bit too much going on in the book. We have murder, a troublesome ghost, a familiar with its own agenda, Dorothy’s father returning and up to mischief, and an old school witchfinder (this is not all). I just felt that it was overwhelming for one novel. The characters (for the most part) are interesting and likeable. I did find Olivia a little too whiny and annoying (I was not amused by her). While this is the third book in A Retired Witches Mystery series, it can be read alone. The readers are given all the information needed to enjoy the novel (in case you have not read the first two books). I give Putting on the Witch 4 out of 5 stars. The book moves along at a good pace (neither fast nor slow). The mystery was complex with some twists along the way. My favorite character is Antonio, the witchfinder. I hope we will see him again in the future (if there are any more books in the series). This was a good final book from writers Jim and Joyce Lavene. They will be missed. The first two book sin A Retired Witches Mystery series are Spell Booked (currently $1.99 on Amazon) and Looking for Mr. Good Witch.
I hope everyone had a special day. I am currently reading Dying for Strawberries by Sharon Farrow. I will (of course) return tomorrow with another wonderful (in my humble opinion) book review. Take care and Happy Reading!
The Avid Reader