If being an adolescent already feels like a curse, try life as a modern teenage witch.
Although 17-year-old Josephine Hemlock still grieves for her mother, who died from the Curse, she and her spunky grandmother manage to hide their witch identities from the rest of their small Iowa town. When popular Winn asks her out, Jo may finally reap the happiness she deserves. The light romance turns thriller, however, after her long-lost father, controlled by dark magic, appears unexpectedly in Jo’s female-only household. Questions about her parents’ relationship beget more questions about the events leading up to her mother’s murder and who may have stricken her with the Curse. And Jo may not be the only one in her high school with secrets. With the help of some unexpected allies (and a possible love-triangle interest), she may not only find her mother’s killer, but end the Curse for good and preserve her family line. As in Transparent (2013), Whipple pays attention to details (but doesn’t get bogged down with them) to create a magical, entertaining world that has the right amount of darkness to keep the story intriguing and the right amount of light to keep readers content.
With unwavering BFFs, stolen kisses, red herrings and a variety of spells, there’s something for chick-lit, romance, mystery and fantasy fans alike. (Supernatural romance. 13-18)