I received a review copy of the audiobook from the publishers through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. It has not affected my opinions.
Genre: Fantasy Age Range: Adult Star Rating: Series: standalone
As one of the few witches in Britain, Mika Moon knows she has to hide her magic, keep her head down, and stay away from other witches so their powers don’t mingle and draw attention. And as an orphan who lost her parents at a young age and was raised by strangers, she’s used to being alone and she follows the rules…with one exception: an online account, where she posts videos “pretending” to be a witch. She thinks no one will take it seriously.
But someone does. An unexpected message arrives, begging her to travel to the remote and mysterious Nowhere House to teach three young witches how to control their magic. It breaks all of the rules, but Mika goes anyway, and is immediately tangled up in the lives and secrets of not only her three charges, but also an absent archaeologist, a retired actor, two long-suffering caretakers, and…Jamie. The handsome and prickly librarian of Nowhere House would do anything to protect the children, and as far as he’s concerned, a stranger like Mika is a threat. An irritatingly appealing threat.
As Mika begins to find her place at Nowhere House, the thought of belonging somewhere begins to feel like a real possibility. But magic isn’t the only danger in the world, and when a threat comes knocking at their door, Mika will need to decide whether to risk everything to protect a found family she didn’t know she was looking for….
Blurb taken from Goodreads. Add to your shelves here.
THE VERY SECRET SOCIETY OF IRREGULAR WITCHES is the exact sort of quirky I love. It’s so wryly funny that makes the bizarre set of events (that fits the chaotic brand of magic) seem perfectly reasonable. It has that feeling of “how can any event be more unbelievable and hysterical than this”, and then something does, all written with a n understated “and it all went down from there, which didn’t really surprise Mika” sort of style.
The narrator (Samara MacLaren) absolutely pulls that offhand humour off without a hitch with the perfect tone to make it seem so reasonable that there are treehouses being set alight with fires that don’t burn. Mika is ever cheerful but also exasperated with the nonsense of it all (in a charmed way with the girls, but irritated exasperated with Primrose etc.) I think this book could have ended up feeling a lot less coherent without the tone walking the boundary just right. If you are into audiobooks, this is one I highly recommend you pick up.
The majority of the narration is from Mika (probably 85% of the book is her perspective.) Jamie has a few chapters and then there are two scenes from other POVs (so far as I could tell.) It was fun to occasionally get Jamie’s perspective – mostly because it meant more Ian.
Ian was my favourite character, the utterly extravagant (and utterly shameless) older gentleman. He is a complete laugh and steals all the scenes he’s in. He is trying to matchmake and knit vivid pink clothes for everyone, and will propose the most excessive plans.
It is a true standalone, without too much space for another (direct sequel) book. But I hope we get another book in the same sort of style from Sangu Mandanna, because this is the sort of quirky I like and I want more of it.
3 thoughts on “Audiobook ARC Review: THE VERY SECRET SOCIETY OF IRREGULAR WITCHES by Sangu Mandanna”
This is such a great book, one that I think a lot of people will enjoy. I loved Ian and his husband, too! Mika was my favorite though — I love characters that are just…sunshine. great review!
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I really hope people do as it is just so NICE