Published: June 29th, 2015
by: Terry Maggert
Series: Halfway Witchy
Genres: Paranormal-Romance, Urban-Fantasy
Source: Review Request
My Rating: 3.5 Stars
Come for the waffles. Stay for the magic.
Carlie McEwan loves many things.
She loves being a witch. She loves her town of Halfway, NY—a tourist destination nestled on the shores of an Adirondack lake. Carlie loves her enormous familiar, Gus, who is twenty-five pounds of judgmental Maine Coon cat, and she positively worships her Grandmother, a witch of incredible power and wisdom. Carlie spends her days cooking at the finest—and only—real diner in town, and her life is a balance between magic and the mundane, just as she likes it.
When a blonde stranger sits at the diner counter and calls her by name, that balance is gone. Major Pickford asks Carlie to lead him into the deepest shadows of the forest to find a mythical circle of chestnut trees, thought lost to forever to mankind. There are ghosts in the forest, and one of them cries out to Carlie across the years–Come find me.
Like the forest shadows, danger can run deep. The threat is real, but Carlie’s magic is born of a pure spirit. With the help of Gus, and Gran, and a rugged cop who really does want to save the world, she’ll fight to bring a ghost home, and deliver justice to a murderer who hides in the cool, mysterious green of a forest gone mad with magic.
I knew the moment I saw the cover to this book that it would be different. It has all the qualities of a good PNR or UF, but it stands out by the calmness that the story gives off. Don’t get me wrong, there’s definitely some tension when the dead bodies start showing up, and the sexy vampire comes into town. I just never thought that it would be so easy to fall into this story. I liked the flow, and before you know it, it’s over. I’m excited to read the next book, to see how our heroine grows and adjusts to her new beau. However, the beginning wasn’t exactly slow, but there’s a lot of character development, magic defining, and world building. That’s not exactly a bad thing, considering the genre. It was, however, a little long winded. I felt that there was too much narration and not enough dialogue.
Halfway Dead is set in a tourist town called Halfway; in the state of New York. Carlie loves her town and the people in it. She’s selfless and is a very one-with-nature kind of girl. She is also a witch. I love the relationship that she has with her Gran, who is teaching her the ways of their long line of witchery. Carlie works at the local diner (gotta love those diners where everyone knows you and you them), but she also has a job to do. That job includes keeping the town of Halfway free of creatures that go bump in the night and helping the locals get over grief or shine some light in their direction. As long as it’s nothing harmful, Carlie does it all. At the start, we get to see a little of what Carlie can do, when she kills two Wendigos in the woods, while they are making camp and cooking up some unsuspecting victim to eat. That excitement lasted only moments, but then we get to meet Gran and her awesome Maine Coon – Gus. As the story ventures on, the real mystery solving begins. And it all started with trees.
I liked the fresh feel to the different types of magic used in this story. The details are really well fleshed out, and I liked that Carlie is still oblivious to some of it’s usage. I want to see her grow as a character, so I like where the author is taking this story. The family history that is explored is also great, but there are many secrets still yet to be revealed. There are many creatures to meet, and while some are interesting, others are dangerous. Enter the sexy Viking vampire Wulfric. He has come to help save the day! Of course, there’s instant attraction, so I hope to get more of the romance aspect in the next book. I would like to know more about Major Pickford, since he seems important to the story. He was there one moment, and gone the next. If he’s not going to be a key player in this world, I think he should not have been mentioned at all. I’m sure Carlie could have found some other way to find those supposedly lost trees.
Overall, this was a good read for me. Despite the little problems I had with this, I can’t deny that it’s a refreshing read since I’ve been reading lots of the genre lately. If you mix Sabrina the Teenage Witch & Buffy, you’d get Carlie the White Witch of Halfway. Recommended!
*I was gifted a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.*