Mar 13, 2013

Book Review: The Water Witch - Juliet Dark

Title: The Water Witch (Fairwick Chronicles #2)
Author: Juliet Dark
Release Date: February 12th 2013
Publisher: Ballantine Books
Source: NetGalley
After casting out a dark spirit, Callie McFay, a professor of gothic literature, has at last restored a semblance of calm to her rambling Victorian house. But in the nearby thicket of the Honeysuckle Forest, and in the currents of the rushing Undine River, more trouble is stirring...
The enchanted town of Fairwick’s dazzling mix of mythical creatures has come under siege from the Grove: a sinister group of witches determined to banish the fey back to their ancestral land. With factions turning on one another, all are cruelly forced to take sides. Callie’s grandmother, a prominent Grove member, demands her granddaughter’s compliance, but half-witch/half-fey Callie can hardly betray her friends and colleagues at the college.
To stave off disaster, Callie enlists Duncan Laird, an alluring seductive academic who cultivates her vast magical potential, but to what end? Deeply conflicted, Callie struggles to save her beloved Fairwick, dangerously pushing her extraordinary powers to the limit—risking all, even the needs of her own passionate heart.
Since I already had nothing but praises for The Demon Lover, I didn't think this sequel could surpass that by a big margin. Well, I'm happy to say I stand corrected, because The Water Witch was everything the first book was, and so much more.

Cailleach McFay was trying to live normally after she had banished Liam, her incubus lover, but she couldn't deny that she missed him, and that she blamed herself for not being able to love him - the only requirement for Liam to become human. But being doorkeeper to the last passageway to Faerie was keeping Callie busy, what with a crazy undine who wants to kill her, and her grandmother's witchy friends set to close the door.

The Water Witch was a really great sequel. It kept the first book's winning attributes while working on the bad ones. It still teemed with magical creatures, expanding on the ones we met in The Demon Lover and introducing new ones, all of which were critical to the plot. The descriptions still flowed so smoothly and lyrically, especially as we learned more about Faerie (because Callie finally went there!) and its history. 

What made this better than the first book, though, was the fast pace. In less than three chapters, Callie already had a huge problem, and as the story progressed, her list of things to solve and face just got longer. She had to unlock her full power which her parents "warded" so her power-hungry grandmother wouldn't know about it, she had to learn how to keep the last door to Faerie open, and also deal with her conflicting feelings for Liam.

With a plot tighter than the first book's, The Water Witch was a fast read for me because I couldn't stop turning to the next page; I read 60% in one sitting! Although the foreshadowing was a bit too much because I'd guessed what I suppose was the big shocker, the ending was heartbreaking (again) and an absolutely perfect set-up for the third book, The Angel Stone!

MY FAVORITE PART was the shocking and excruciating ending.

(cover and blurb from

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