Wednesday, 4 September 2013
Witchstruck by Victoria Lamb
Author: Victoria Lamb
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Released: July 5th 2013
Pages: 320 (eBook)
Buy: Amazon UK / Amazon US
Add on Goodreads
If she sink, she be no witch and shall be drowned.
If she float, she be a witch and must be hanged.
Meg Lytton has always known she is different--that she bears a dark and powerful gift. But in 1554 England, in service at Woodstock Palace to the banished Tudor princess Elizabeth, it has never been more dangerous to practise witchcraft. Meg knows she must guard her secret carefully from the many suspicious eyes watching over the princess and her companions. One wrong move could mean her life, and the life of Elizabeth, rightful heir to the English throne.
With witchfinder Marcus Dent determined to have Meg's hand in marriage, and Meg's own family conspiring against the English queen, there isn't a single person Meg can trust. Certainly not the enigmatic young Spanish priest Alejandro de Castillo, despite her undeniable feelings. But when all the world turns against her, Meg must open her heart to a dangerous choice.
I don't really know what I was expecting, to be honest. I like historical novels - there's something educational but equally fascinating about them - and as the Tudor period is one of my favourites to study, I thought this would be right up my street. Turns out that it wasn't what I had been expecting.
Meg is a witch - not only that, but she is the servent to Elizabeth Tudor, currently banished under suspicion of being a heretic. With Elizabeth's mother being a convicted witch, Meg knows she needs to keep a low profile, for both her sake and her mistress's. But how can she do that when known witch-hunter Marcus wants her hand in marriage? Turning him down is the wrong move - suddenly, everyone is after Meg, and she soon begins to wonder who she can truly trust.
If I'm being truthful, I nearly did give up with this. I got to sixty percent of the way through, and I just sat back and thought: I can't. Even though it did get better, it was tortuously slow to begin with. I thought there would be a lot more magic and a lot more Tudor influence. But really, it was this Meg girl chasing around after a Spanish priest whilst somehow consistently dodging various hangings and drownings. If I had to write this review in a sentence, it would be 'I wanted more'. The only reason I stuck it through to the end was because I had reached the halfway mark - otherwise, this would have been a DNF.
I think it might have been better if I'd actually liked Meg - but I didn't. I found her a very weak heroine, especially for someone who was supposed to be some badass witch. I mean, how many times did she faint? And it was over the most minor of things.
I didn't like Lamb's portrayal of Elizabeth, either. I've always looked up to Elizabeth the First, as she was known to be quite headstrong and independent. The Elizabeth in the book was very dependent on others, and headstrong in a selfish and whiny way.
I think Witchstruck could have been absolutely amazing - the premise held so much promise, and I can't help but feel slightly let down by the delivery. However, this may just be my own taste - personally, I would have liked more. Hopefully, I'll get that more in Witchfall.