SERIES: The Spellwork Syndicate #2
GENRES/ SUBJECTS: YA, Paranormal
After her run-in with a jealous warlock, apprentice baker Anise Wise can’t wait to get back the kitchen where she belongs. But thanks to her brush with death, the land of the living isn’t all cupcakes and marshmallows.
Anise’s magical mojo is way out of whack and her evolving powers are stirring up trouble. As the town buzzes with news that Anise can bake deathly spells, unsavory characters start lining up for a taste. They’ll stop at nothing for the chance to use Anise and her witchcraft to further their own plots.
She plans to hole up researching magic recipes until the attention dies down, but then she discovers the horrifying terms of her bodyguard’s contract. Wynn has saved her life so many times, she can’t leave him trapped. But doing the right thing will mean risking death or worse—being cast out of her dream job.
For this witch, justice might not be as sweet as advertised.
I dove straight into Sugar Spells after finishing the first novel in the series, Deadly Sweet.
I just love the world that Dodge has created in this series. The atmosphere is so hopeful and joyful and magical, even when there are dark and disturbing things on horizon.
I thought the plot of this was much stronger here than the first one. The threats felt more real and partly this was because they were both external and internal, as Anise is having problems with her magic due to events that happened in the first book. I thought was a really good piece of consistency and something I really appreciated from the author. Also, the events bring more magical, paranormal creatures — like vampires and demons — into Anise’s life.
I love that we got to see more of her friends and their families, and that we got introduced more to the way in which the town works. It’s good to see that there’s a variety of occupations available for the witches, without any of them seeming too mundane. We have Agatha’s magical bake shop, where Anise is obviously working, but we also got to see a magical funeral home, a mythical creature veterinary practice and hints of other things like soap shops and B&Bs. I love this town, and I really hope that as the series goes on we’ll get to see more and more of the businesses and more and more of the witches that live there.
As I mentioned in my previous review, I was sort of shipping Anise and Wynn but feeling a bit unsure of whether or not I should. I loved the way Dodge has developed their relationship in this book — I feel totally vindicated! I really liked that although the romance is very, very slow-burn building, at the same time has made a plot point out of making sure there is no icky power imbalance with Wynn being under obligation to Anise.
I still absolutely love these books, and I think this one is even stronger than first — always a good sign! I’m looking forward to seeing where this series goes next and really anticipating picking up the third book, Wicked Tasty, when it’s released
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