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Wooo Hooo Witchy Woman

A book review of Chime by Franny Billingsley, a lovely little book about a wicked girl.

Wooo Hooo Witchy Woman

BOOK REPORT for Chime by Franny Billingsley

Cover Story: Blaaarg
BFF Charm: Yay!
Swoonworthy Scale: 7
Talky Talk: Hit or Miss
Bonus Factor: Second Sight
Relationship Status: I'll Run Away With You

Cover Story: Blaaarg

That is the sound I make when looking at this cover. I would not have picked up this book if it hadn't been recommended to me. While the cover is technically an accurate representation of elements within the story, the come hither look of the girl makes me hate life. At least I like sepia?

The Deal:

Briony is a bit wicked and a witch to boot, the combination of which has led to several disasters for her and her family. Her identical twin sister Rose is a bit odd in the head, her stepmother is dead and Briony blames herself. In an attempt to keep herself on the straight and narrow, Briony avoids the swamps near her home. Growing up, the swamps used to be a place of refuge and adventure for Briony. But the swamps are home to many Old Ones, witches and other spirits and monsters, all of whom Briony can talk to and see with her second sight. When Rose gets infected with the deadly swamp cough, it is up to Briony to stop her village from draining the swamp, the process of which is causing an Old One in the swamp to infect the villagers. But how can Briony reveal that knowledge without revealing that she is a witch? And in a town that hangs potential witches, Brinoy's secrets are a matter of life and death.

BFF Charm: Yay!

I adore Briony. She thinks she's unlovable but that's only because no one is as awesome as she is. She's witty and clever and knows it. She's self-deprecating, but at the same time so self-aware that it is funny rather than annoying. For example, when considering which sins she possesses, Briony thinks to herself:

Pride? Absolutely. I hated myself, but I also loved myself in a hateful way.

Briony thinks she's wicked and bad hearted, but she's really not. She feels too guilty to be wicked. And when she doesn't feel guilty, she feels guilty for not feeling guilty. She just needs to come to terms with her past. I would be her friend in a heartbeat. Except it might get awkward, because I would constantly be trying to date her potential BF, Eldric.

Swoonworthy Scale: 7

I've spent most of my time so far talking about Briony. But let's talk about Eldric. He's handsome and charming and kind and goofy and adventurous and funny and I LOVE HIM. So many potential love interests these days are so flat. They're handsome, strong and probably brave and that's it. Maybe they have one extra trait or flaw thrown in for good measure. But Eldric! I want to date Eldric! He's just so adorable. While there aren't too many traditionally swoony scenes between Briony and Eldric, I still find myself extremely invested in these two crazy kids.

Talky Talk: Hit or Miss

At times it could seem out of place with the time and setting of the book, but the dialogue from Briony, Rose and Eldric is enjoyable and clever. The book is narrated by Briony and some of the passages can be quite lovely. For example:

That night, the swamp craving returned. What a strange word, craving. What is it, really? It's hard to describe, despite the fact that it keeps you up all night. It's trickier than pain. It's an itch stuck below your skin. You lie awake on your side of the do-not-cross line, listening to your sister heave and cough. You scratch at inch-ants that tunnel through your bones. You never reach them.

However, sometimes Briony's narrative is a bit confusing, a bit in her own language. For the most part, I liked how different the writing style was. As a fair warning, I can see the style being a turn off to some readers, but I personally enjoyed it.

Bonus Factor: Second Sight

This book was filled with all sorts of supernatural creatures, generally referred to as the old ones - witches and ghosts and all sorts of monstrous things. Some are powerful and dangerous, others are harmless. While the other villagers are aware of their existence, most can't see or interact with them like Briony can. And while Briony mostly only sees the downside to this ability, I would quite enjoy having access to supernatural ghoulies who would potentially do my bidding.

Casting Call:

I think Emilia would make a perfect Briony - she looks childlike, yet has a fierce attitude. (That said, for those of you not watching Game of Thrones yet, WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR???!)

Emilia Clarke as Briony/Rose

Hey look, it's Gale's long lost older (and much better looking) brother! Eldric is constantly described by Briony as looking like a lion. At the moment, I can't think of anyone more golden than Thor.

Chris Hemsworth as Eldric

Relationship Status: I'll Run Away With You

This book is different, unique, weird! And because I am so intrigued, if this book asked me, I would totally run away with it. Maybe it won't last forever because this book isn't my normal type, but I'll willing to give it an honest try.

Megan Crane's photo About the Author: Megan is an unabashed fangirl who is often in a state of panic about her inability to watch, read and play all the things.