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Castle of Sighs (Hedge Witch) Paperback – October 27, 2016
The Amazon Book Review
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About the Author
Jennifer Murgia writes Young Adult Fantasy and Contemporary novels. She has long loved the dark and speculative--and it's from these dark places that she weaves fantastical stories, often hoping to find truth in them. She is the co-founder and coordinator of YAFest: an annual teen book festival in Easton, PA. She currently resides in Pennsylvania with her husband, her two children, and a very spoiled cat.
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Moreover, the problems plaguing the first one continue to persist in this one – irrational actions of characters. Rune knew the castle is dangerous but still continues to live there. She hasn’t explored it for over a year but now suddenly does. Matilde never told her about the past, which seems stupid since the castle was sealed for a reason. Also, no motivation given for Matilde to help Laurentz’s mother. While all these actions pull together the plot, there is no logical reason behind them happening. And when the whole story could have been avoided with the simple fact of letting a witch train and embrace her bloodline, it makes for a weak story plot. In conclusion, the story comes together well, and is entertaining, but has a lot of plot holes.
Received a free galley from Spencer Hill Press via Netgalley; this does not influence my opinions or review.
In the second book for the series, Rune is living with the unclaimed orphans in her inherited castle of Pyrmont. She feels out of place and wants to return to her forest but knows she is not able to. She is doing the right thing. She is all little Margret has. Her mother died in the dungeon of the Bishop. Niclaus is unclaimed also.
Something dark inhabits the castle. When Niclaus finds human bones, a feeling of dread takes over Rune. When Niclaus also keeps seeing an old woman, Rune’s fears increase. Rune gathers enough courage to enter the hidden passageway. She takes it underneath the castle finding a room filled with things that a witch would use. Her mother’s witch room intrigues her. Unbeknownst to her something is coaxing her to the room and the darkness. Laurentz fears for her and tries to get her to leave the castle with the children.
She refuses to leave. She wants to get to the bottom of what is going on. She searches the Grimoire that she and Laurentz uncover. Hidden inside is a parchment that reveals the secrets that Rune is searching for. She is shocked at what she learns. She then has to use her strength, wits, and magick to fight the evil darkness that is trying to invade. Everyone’s life depends on it especially Niclaus.
This book comes across as dark and almost gothic. It continues the story from the Forest of Secrets. Rune has left the forest and settled in her inherited castle after the Bishop was defeated. She has defeated one evil and has stumbled upon another. This story reveals a lot of the past. It explains what happened to her grandmother and some of what happened to her mother. Matilde’s secrets are finally known also. Rune has to accept and embrace her legacy to conquer the darkness that lurks in the castle.
However she doubts herself at first which I hate. She talks herself out of seeing the things she does, explaining it all away. It drove me crazy. She seemed too afraid to believe it. I want her to use her strength and courage. She has already proven she has both.
Her story with Laurentz is sweet. I love them together. Of course his story was a bit surprising. I wasn’t expecting it at all. He seemed to take it better than I would when he learned the truth. Rune still accepted him no matter what and the same as he does with her. Great continuation of their story. I give it a 3.5 out of 5. It was an intriguing story.
I highly suggest that everyone read the first book of the series. I read some reviews saying that they didn't know that this was the second book in a series at first but still, they read on. There's really nothing wrong with that but of course, the experience will be a whole lot better if you've read the first one.
Rune grew up a lot! As I read through the Castle of Sighs, it's obvious that the author made some huge characters developments in our main protagonist. Rune was a young and confused witch at Forest of Whispers but in here, she embraced who she is and tried to be better despite all the negative and cruel things that people kept throwing at her. Yes she's a blood witch, but that doesn't mean she's part of the problem.
The writing was so magnificent. Jennifer Murgia just enthralled me the whole way. I was sucked in from the first chapter and the story did not let me go until the very end. I have to double check my surrounding for a moment every time I read Castle of Sighs so that I can remind myself that I'm reading in my bedroom and not roaming the castle along with Rune. Everything about Murgia's writing is absolutely beautiful.
All the characters charmed their way into my heart. And what's the best is my Laurentz-Rune shipper heart is happy and swooning. I admit that I was left asking for more but I get that it was not the main focus of the book. I was still satisfied with the little romance that the author inserted.
Castle of Sighs is a solid follow up to an amazing book. Not only did it maintain the mysterious and enchanting vibe of the series but it intensified it even more. Looking for the perfect read this season? This series got you covered!