“The Near Witch is only an old story told to frighten children.

If the wind calls at night, you must not listen. The wind is lonely, and always looking for company.

And there are no strangers in the town of Near.

These are the truths that Lexi has heard all her life.

But when an actual stranger—a boy who seems to fade like smoke—appears outside her home on the moor at night, she knows that at least one of these sayings is no longer true.

The next night, the children of Near start disappearing from their beds, and the mysterious boy falls under suspicion. Still, he insists on helping Lexi search for them. Something tells her she can trust him.

As the hunt for the children intensifies, so does Lexi’s need to know—about the witch that just might be more than a bedtime story, about the wind that seems to speak through the walls at night, and about the history of this nameless boy.”

The Near Witch has so many amazing qualities. From the title and the cover alone I knew I wanted to read it. The first sentence had me captivated. “It starts with a crack, a sputter, and a spark.” The words flow so beautifully. The story is so haunting and frightening, but filled with a fierce hope. At the last sentence I had a smile on my face. It has that lovely fairy tale quality that reminds me of something the Brothers Grimm mighv’ve written. The world Schawb has created is so stunningly beautiful, I could picture it and could almost hear the wind whispering it’s secrets.

Lexi wants to be like her father, she believes that she shouldn’t be treated like a child or like one of the women, because her father never treated her like that. When the nameless stranger appears, she is sure he is innocent of nothing other than being a stranger. Surely that isn’t a crime? But in the town of Near where the people are stubborn in keeping everything the same, it is.

The timeless quality of this small town makes it a book I definitely want to share with the future children in my life.

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The Near Witch is scheduled to be released on August 2nd.

I received my copy from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.


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