books, reviews

Book Review: The Scapegracers – Hannah Abigail Clarke

I was sent this book to review at the beginning of the year but then 2020 went insane and publication was delayed, so I held this back and re-read it. Hope you enjoy my thoughts!

An outcast teenage lesbian witch finds her coven hidden amongst the popular girls in her school, and performs some seriously badass magic in the process.
Skulking near the bottom of West High’s social pyramid, Sideways Pike lurks under the bleachers doing magic tricks for Coke bottles. As a witch, lesbian, and lifelong outsider, she’s had a hard time making friends.

But when the three most popular girls pay her $40 to cast a spell at their Halloween party, Sideways gets swept into a new clique. The unholy trinity are dangerous angels, sugar-coated rattlesnakes, and now–unbelievably–Sideways’ best friends.Together, the four bond to form a ferocious and powerful coven.

They plan parties, cast curses on dudebros, try to find Sideways a girlfriend, and elude the fundamentalist witch hunters hellbent on stealing their magic. But for Sideways, the hardest part is the whole ‘having friends’ thing.

Who knew that balancing human interaction with supernatural peril could be so complicated?

My thoughts:

When I was 14 or 15 I wanted to be a witch, Practical Magic and The Craft made me wish for powers, a way to drown out the intense sadness and loneliness coiling in my brain. Instead I had books, which have a kind of magic all their own.

Even now, I sort of wish I had the ability to cast spells and make things happen, I wish I was a Scapegracer.

Sideways, Daisy, Jing and Yates are baby witches, taking back control from fuck boys and doing fun magic things, like levitating. Sideways has always been an outsider, but the ultimate cool girls are inviting her in.

Obviously it all goes a bit wonky, there are witch hunters, and dangerous love interests and book demons and gay dads (I adore Boris and Julian and would happily read a book all about them) and some parties to throw and high school, yada yada.

Sideways takes Jing to her first gay bar, Dorothy’s, and they meet a sort of witch librarian, who I would also happily read a book about, and I just love the idea of witches living amongst us, hidden by their ordinariness.

Basically this is a really fun book with teenage witches, some of whom are gay, and I want the next book ASAP!!!

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