Thursday, November 10, 2011

Something Witchy This Way Comes by Veronica Blade - Review: Pump Up Your Book Tour Stop




Brainiac Tessa McClean’s newly discovered magical powers give her hope of an escape from her inadequate life. But the thrill of being a witch fades when she learns of a rival coven and begins to suspect her own coven’s objective. Evidence tells Tessa to trust one side, but instinct drives her toward the other.

When Hayden Anders, the most delinquent kid in school — and the toughest — offers self-defense lessons in exchange for tutoring, the timing couldn’t be better. Though the idea of hanging out with a bad-boy that tempting is unnerving, staying alive amidst warring witches takes priority. She vows to hold onto her values and not surrender to the bad-boy she begins to secretly want.

Together, Tessa and Hayden uncover the truth about the two factions — a truth that explains why the covens will stop at nothing to lure her to their side. Tessa has only a matter of weeks to form an alliance with one coven or the other, but the wrong decision could cost Tessa the lives of all those she loves — including Hayden.

EXCERPT






Chapter One

Hayden

Principal Linton had to be kidding.

“You want to use a seventeen-year-old boy to guard someone?” I much preferred to think of myself as a man but that wouldn’t get me out of doing what he wanted.

“I’m not any happier about this than you, Hayden.”

I doubted that. The new principal had signed on only a couple weeks ago and already he knew how to throw his meager weight around. Linton probably read my file and decided to make me pay for all the crap I’d pulled in high school. I’d been better this year. We were two months into the first semester and I hadn’t even been in one fight. Not that I’d get any gold stars or merit badges.
I rolled my eyes. “Who’s the girl?”


“You probably know her. She’s a senior here — Tessa McClean.” He leaned back in his seat and steepled his fingers.

Tessa… I couldn’t match a face to the name. If she turned out to be a dog, it could hurt my rep. But my curiosity was piqued. I sat higher in my chair, which brought the top of Linton’s thinning hair into view. “I’m supposed to shadow some girl because you ask me to?”

Mr. Linton glanced at Agent Phillips standing rigid by the door, then back to me. When he’d introduced her to me, I figured she might be FBI. She hadn’t flashed a badge though. They probably thought I hadn’t noticed or maybe they expected me to take them at their word. But I didn’t care who she was. She could’ve been the first lady and my answer would still be no.

By Agent Phillips’s steely glare, it was obvious she’d rather be anywhere else than in a room with an uncooperative teenager. “While she’s on school grounds, we want you close enough to smell her perfume.”

“Seriously?” Something didn’t ring true in the whole scenario. No way would anyone trust a high schooler with a job so important, much less depend on anyone with a rap sheet like mine. I slouched in the hardwood chair and let my gaze drift to the dull off-white walls of his office. “Wouldn’t an FBI agent be better qualified for the job?”

The principal tapped a pencil on the desk. “They don’t have anyone local who looks young enough to blend in with the other students.”

Yep. Payback. But not if I could help it. “Ship him in from somewhere else.”

Agent Phillips straightened her suit jacket. “We’ve put in a request. Now we wait.”

“In the meantime, we think you might prove useful,” Mr. Linton said.

If the girl needed a bodyguard, she was obviously in trouble. That kind of thing was catchy at close range. “It’s gratifying to know you have no problem putting me in danger.” I kept my tone flat, one brow raised. “Why not keep her home? Then you don’t have to worry about your agents blending in.”

“It’s unlikely anyone will try anything around a bunch of kids. Even if they did, they’d be easily spotted. We’re only asking you to keep an eye on her and alert us if you see anything unusual. It’s just a precaution, Hayden.”

I grunted, not quite buying it.
Mr. Linton eyed me then flipped through papers on his desk. “Some of these notes indicate you’ve successfully defended yourself under difficult circumstances. Last year, three boys jumped you and everyone required first aid — except you. I suppose those guys were lucky to walk away, eh?” His gaze met mine again. I didn’t rise to the bait and he continued. “You’ve got some valuable fighting skills. It’s time to use them for good instead of evil,” he said with a straight face.

Yeah, I needed those skills to defend myself against my alcoholic stepfather. It had been a while since he’d laid a hand on me or my mom though. He still limped from the last time. “Is this some kind of joke?” I asked.

Agent Phillips glided across the carpet to stand next to Principal Linton. She looped a thumb in her waistband, nudging the front of her black suit jacket aside to expose a gun. If it weren’t for her butch clothing, she’d be attractive — slim build and dark auburn hair. I imagined what she’d look like in a short skirt and high heels. Maybe later I’d get a chance to see if she was open to younger men. If I seemed eager to help, she might be more receptive… I shook off the thought. A semi-hot woman didn’t catch enough of my interest to make me want to keep company with the school principal.
I opened my mouth to speak but she beat me to it.
“Not a joke, Mr. Anders.” Her eyes narrowed to slits. “A fellow student needs help.”

Tap-tap-tap.

Linton nodded at Agent Philips who opened the door and stepped aside. A blond girl beamed from the doorway, including everyone in her sunshine. Was this her? Tessa Mc-whatever? Okay… definitely not a dog.


MY REVIEW
4 Stars

I was immediately drawn into Tessa’s world and had no difficulty relating to most of the other characters, either.  The point of view alternated frequently between Tessa, a young witch just discovering she has supernatural powers, and Hayden, her assigned protector – a young man who is struggling to overcome a difficult childhood. An experienced brawler, Hayden enjoys playing the field until Tessa refuses to take his flirting and advances seriously; simultaneously keeping him on his toes and off-balance.

With her breezy irreverence, remarkable self-assurance, and beguiling innocence, Tessa’s voice is the one I enjoyed the most.  Personally, I would have liked the entire tale to have been told from her perspective exclusively.  However, Hayden’s voice grew on me after a bit, and I soon relished seeing situations through his eyes, as well.

My interest never waned throughout the story, but I actually do think, at well over 8000 kindle locations, the story was a bit long, and could have benefited from some surgical editing in a few places.  This is an impressive beginning to a series that promises to deliver a rollicking saga with continually evolving mysterious sub-plots, lots of action, and characters that are constantly challenged to make difficult choices; the consequences of which are still mostly unforeseen. I am looking forward to the next installment.     

Reviewed by Laurie-J





ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Veronica Blade lives in Southern California with her husband and children. By day she runs the family business, but each night she slips away to spin her tales. She writes stories about young adults to relive her own childhood and to live vicariously through her characters. Except her heroes and heroines lead far more interesting lives — and they are always way hotter.


You can visit her website at www.veronicablade.com.



Giveaways, Contests & Prizes!

008Join Veronica Blade at the Pump Up Your Book Live! November Author Chat / Book Giveaway Party on Friday, November 18 starting at 8 p.m. eastern!

Veronica will be giving away a copy of her book! You could win a copy of Something Witchy This Way Comes simply by attending the chat and asking Veronica a question. All there is to it!

For details on chat, visit the official chat page for the November authors at Pump Up Your Book Live!




NEXT STOPS ON TOUR

Thursday, November 10
Book reviewed at My Neurotic Book Affair
Friday, November 11
Book reviewed at Minding Spot
Monday, November 14
Book reviewed at Book Nook Club



Pump-Up-banner

Note:  I purchased Something Witchy This Way Comes for myself from Amazon.

THANKS FOR LOOKING!!

1 comment:

Prudence MacLeod said...

Once again, a great review and a tempting book. One more for the TBR list. Again, thanks for the time you spend making things like this happen.,