Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Madelyn Alt - The Trouble With Magic

Antiques-shop clerk Maggie O'Neill was a little weirded out when she discovered her new boss Felicity was a witch. But when Felicity becomes the suspect in a local murder, Maggie must enlist Felicity's wiccan friends for help--and discover her own spellbinding talent.

Comment: This was one of the longest standing books in my TBR list which I got at Bookmooch, the site that allows you to exchange books with other people. 
It has waited in the pile all this time because, to be honest, the theme never appealed that much to me (I don't mind cozy mysteries but I don't gravitate towards the and the cover style said "comedy" to me and not "mystery") so I didn't mind putting it off.
Since I've read all books I had scheduled for august, I just looked at my shelves and chose a smaller book to finish the month...

In this story we meet Maggie, a down on her luck woman who loses her job right after being offered another one by chance.
Maggie then decides to accept the offer but that same day her new employer Felicity is suspected of killer her estranged sister. Maggie feels like defending this nice lady, even if she has the reputation of being a witch. Adding her controlling mother, her always perfect sister and the cop trying to get information she doesn't have, Maggie suddenly sees herself in quite a mess...

This was an interesting story. It's not a long one so things are quite compact in terms of plot which doesn't leave a lot of room for complicated twists. The purpose is precisely that, I know, but still there were some steps taken by the author to make it interesting. 
Nevertheless, some readers have said the killer was easily recognizable and that always feel too easy if we are talking abut such a small story.

Personally, I can't say I was annoyed at this because overall the story didn't feel as engaging. I struggled a bit to feel interested in reading and in turning the pages. I don't think the beginning was as fascinating as it is made to see if we think about a character that is going to work at a store called Enchantments and the owner is known by being a witch. Perhaps was the mixing of several themes: the weirdness of things, the mystery, the investigation, the character's introduction... in similar types of books, all the clues could be an important part of the plot but here I felt some were redundant or implied other things not that interesting.

Maggie, the main character, was funny and I liked the slightly vulnerable side of hers due to how she saw herself compared to her sister and others. Apart from this, she is as we would expect of such heroine, brave when necessary, believer of good and defender of those she cares about.
I particularly liked the romantic content, she is sort of starting to develop feelings for someone but she has this behavior of not wanting to allow things to go too quickly (so, so often seen in nowadays books) as if by letting go, a part of herself wasn't there exactly. I still have two more books in the series to read (eventually) and I'm curious about how this aspect is going to be developed.

As for the murder plot, it was solved in a very easy manner but without going into details, it was rather simple as if why bother with too much setting up? This means some steps taken by the characters were just too cliché, too much done and without some serious necessity. I felt the lack of more complexity but, as I've said before, this is a small book so probably not that much space for lengthy plots anyway. the writing was easy and plain, I'd say.

There are other subjects one could discuss about this story but to me, I don't think it needs that much attention or explanations. On Goodreads, there are several reviews that stress out some interesting points, though. For me, this was good enough, offered enough hints to make it worth reading but it was by no means, memorable. Was it a disappointment to have waited so long to read it? Probably not since I had no  real expectation of it but... yes, there would be room for improvement. I hope the two I still have to read can be stronger, both in plot and relationships.
Grade: 6/10

No comments:

Post a Comment