The Nature of Witches
By: Rachel Griffin
My rating: 4/5 Stars
Genre: YA Fantasy, Witches
Page Count: 384
Synopsis: For centuries, witches have maintained the climate, their power from the sun peaking in the season of their birth. But now their control is faltering as the atmosphere becomes more erratic. All hope lies with Clara, an Everwitch whose rare magic is tied to every season.
In Autumn, Clara wants nothing to do with her power. It’s wild and volatile, and the price of her magic―losing the ones she loves―is too high, despite the need to control the increasingly dangerous weather.
In Winter, the world is on the precipice of disaster. Fires burn, storms rage, and Clara accepts that she’s the only one who can make a difference.
In Spring, she falls for Sang, the witch training her. As her magic grows, so do her feelings, until she’s terrified Sang will be the next one she loses.
In Summer, Clara must choose between her power and her happiness, her duty and the people she loves… before she loses Sang, her magic, and thrusts the world into chaos.
THIS REVIEW IS SPOILER FREE
I fell in love with this book from the cover. Full disclosure I usually hate real people on the cover of books but something about this cover is just so beautiful and perfectly conveyed the feel and tone of the book. Also there is a gorgeous floral pattern on the hardcover underneath the dust jacket that just made me love the book even more before I even read a single page! I just saw it in the store and it screamed fall to me, and I am a sucker for anything witch related so it was a no brainer for me.
This story was so beautiful, and incredibly unique, I can honestly say I have never read a book quite like it. I absolutely loved the subtle (and not so subtle) themes of climate change and our relationship and responsibility to the natural world that were the backbone of this story. I rarely see the themes of climate change explored in fiction and this was a really refreshing and unique way of tackling the issue.
The writing style was really lovely, I liked how the teen of the book shifted with the seasons, depicting how Clara herself changed. I also will admit I shed a tear or two while reading which is really rare for me so that definitely says something about the emotional strength of this book! The romance was also really nicely done, it was soft and sweet and played into the larger themes of belonging and learning for own worth.
Now you’re probably thinking, Norees, it sounds like this was a 5 star read, what’s up with the 4 stars??? Well the only complaint I have, and it’s a small one, is that the ending felt a bit rushed. I think that the big “issue” of the book was resolved a bit too quickly, the solution felt a bit like a Deus ex Machina writing trope, which yes, isn’t uncommon in YA, and the fact that this is a stand alone (I think) also explains that. However, for me the emotional weight and lyric quality of the story suffered a bit with the rushed ending, but other than that I really have no complaints.
I highly recommend this book, I think it is a perfect September/October read, and if nothing else buy it for that cover alone!
Have you read this book? let me know your thoughts in the comments! And drop any other climate exchange related fiction books, I would love to read more!