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Whoo-Hooo, Witchy Woman

Jenny reviews Witch & Wizard by James Patterson and Gabrielle Charbonnet, an engaging story in which a pair of siblings discover their magical powers. 

Whoo-Hooo, Witchy Woman

BOOK REPORT for Witch & Wizard (Witch & Wizard Book 1) by James Patterson and Gabrielle Charbonnet

BFF Charm: Maybe?
Swoonworthy Scale: 3
Talky Talk: Orwell-lite
Bonus Factor: Big Brother, Kid Nation, Alternate Dimensions
Relationship Status: I'll Call You. Really.

The Deal:

Whitford and Wisteria Allgood are your run-of-the-mill teenagers. Their biggest worries are whether they'll pass that math test and serving detention for bad attitudes in school. That is until soldiers break into their home in the middle of the night, arresting them under the authority of the New Order, in the name of The One Who Is The One, and bringing them to a court to face charges of Witchcraft by The One Who Judges. What?! They have no more idea what's going on than we do. What is this New Order? They suddenly, what, just TOOK POWER??!!!! Yep, they did. And now things are getting weird. Wisty burst into flames in a fit of terror, only she didn't get burned, and Whit stopped a flying gavel- thrown at him by The One Who Judges- in MID-AIR. Are they a witch and a wizard? Why didn't they know about this? What happened to their parents? And why are there so many children, starving and being tortured in prisons? Oh, and if they ARE wizards, why can't they control their powers, and get them out of prison before they're executed?

BFF Charm: Maybe?

I liked both Whit and Wisty fine, but I didn't really feel like we connected. They both evolved a great deal in this story, yet I didn't feel like there was much time for actual character development. I'm not saying I WON'T ever give them my charm, I just want to wait until I read the next installment before I make up my mind.

Swoonworthy Scale: 3

Obvs there's no swooniness in the brotherly/sisterly love Whit and Wisty share, cause that would be totes gross, so good. There are some love interests, or at least possible love interests for both of them, and the story definitely has some romance, but it's complicated, and in this installment, there's not much in the smoochie department.

Talky Talk: Orwell-lite

This story smacks of 1984, with a tiny twist. It's told in very short chapters, alternating first-person narrative between Whit and Wisty. It moves swiftly and with precision. I was thoroughly engaged and proportionately creeped out, so even though I didn't LOVE it, it had a LOT of great elements, and I will definitely be looking for the sequel.

I don't know which parts were written by Patterson, and which parts were written by Charbonnet, or how, exactly this whole co-writing thing works for them, but hey, it got me to read a James Patterson book, and I can't really think of anything else that would have done that...

Bonus Factor: Big Brother

He's watching. He's listening. And he's gonna get your ass!

Bonus Factor: Kid Nation

As Whit and Wisty discover, the kids that AREN'T in prison have their shizz TO-GETH-ER! They've formed their own governing body, and guess what? It works! They actually learned from the mistakes the adults made about things like, say, power corrupts, and they take steps to prevent that from happening with them! All in huge old department store!

Bonus Factor: Alternate Dimensions

I love a story with some alternate dimensions! Maybe because they BLOW MY MIND! In this story they exist in the form of the Overworld, the Underworld, the Shadowlands and the Freeland.

Casting Call:

AnnaSophia Robb as Wisty

But with red hair. And...

Zach Gilford as Whit

Relationship Status: I'll Call You. Really.

I'll be the bigger person and admit that I was prejudiced against this book before I read it. (See Patterson entry above.) But the more time we spent together, the more I actually enjoyed it, realizing that this book and I have more in common than perhaps I initially wanted to admit. We went on a couple of dates, and I had a good time. There were no bells ringing or choirs singing, but this book and I were pretty good together. I'm not quite ready to take the plunge and start DATING dating it, but when we last parted, and I told it I'd call, I actually meant it.

Jenny Bird's photo About the Author: Jenny grew up on a steady diet of Piers Anthony, Isaac Asimov and Star Wars novels. She has now expanded her tastes to include television, movies, and YA fiction.
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