Review: ‘The Season of the Witch’ by Natasha Mostert

Portable Magic Ltd.

  Jan 31 2014  (Originally published 2007)

sotw

Fusing industrial espionage, modern day information theft in the City and magical reality, ‘Season of the Witch’ tells the tale of a man’s transformation through tragedy, madness and magic.

Gabriel Blackstone doesn’t normally look for missing people, he’s an information thief not a private investigator, but when his one and only love – now married to another – asks for help to find her step-son he can’t say no. The only information Gabriel has is that the Monk sisters – a pair of witty beautiful sisters – had something to do with the young man’s disappearance; getting the information is going to be harder than any other job he’s ever had, and he will not be the same once he does.

At the risk of damning with faint praise my verdict on this book is that it’s okay, but not fantastic. The basic premise is great, I was really looking forward to getting to grips with it when I read the synopsis  but was disappointed. There were moments when it sparkled – the descriptions of information overload, the house of a million doors – but like fireworks the bright light bloomed and flickered out. The story telling was strong right up until the point something need explaining, then the author cut away to some point in the future or past. It had an unsatisfying conclusion. Certain moments of deus ex machina – Minnaloushe’s sudden arrival and explanation of events, the diary, Minnaloushe’s last email- add to this feeling.

On the other hand, I liked the character of Frankie – Gabriel really doesn’t deserve her.

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