The Near Witch is only an old story told to frighten children.
If the wind calls at night, you must not listen.
The wind is lonely, and always looking for company.
There are no strangers in the town of Near.
These are the truths that Lexi has heard all her life. But when an actual stranger – a boy who seems to fade like smoke – appears outside her home on the moor at night, she knows that at least one of these sayings is no longer true.
The next night, the children of Near start disappearing from their beds, and the mysterious boy falls under suspicion. As the hunt for the children intensifies, so does Lexi’s need to know – about the witch that just might be more than a bedtime story, about the wind that seems to speak through the walls at night, and about the history of this nameless boy.
Part fairy tale, part love story, Victoria Schwab’s debut novel is entirely original yet achingly familiar: a song you heard long ago, a whisper carried by the wind, and a dream you won’t soon forget.
This was a fantastic novel!! I really loved this book and the voice in which it was written. I felt like I was in an old village with these characters and was being told the tale of the old scary witch. The writing of the novel is strong and feels like a voice from long ago, and it is filled with wonderful descriptions. The language is simple, yet very elegant and rich.
I loved the characters. Most of them anyway, except for the ones you aren’t supposed to love of course. Lexi is a very responsible and be-herself character, even though her uncle constantly wanted her to do the things girls are supposed to do. I would have liked to have seen a touch more from Cole, though, but he was a good character as well.
As for the cover of the book, I found it very appealing and inviting. The way the subject is peering from behind the curtain gives a mysterious air, making you wonder what she is looking at. I also like the fact that it isn’t a dark cover, instead it is mostly white with dark font, which is a fancy older looking script.
This story is old and new at the same time. The plot was great, the dilemmas were great, the idea was great, and the voice was great. The only complaint I have against the book is that the resolution was a bit anticlimactic. They are running around trying to solve these problems and find the children and finally when the big final scene comes, it’s really quick and over. I did a “that was it?” after I read it, but that’s the only grievance from me on this book. Wonderful, wonderful read!
Elegant, incredibly descriptive, fairy tale feel, engaging, simplistic resolution.