The Witch WithinThe Witch Within by Iva Kenaz

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Stockholm Syndrome. Just looked it up and didn’t want to forget it. I’ll get back to it later.

I want to thank A.S. Johnson for her many book recommendations. She rarely leads me wrong. I certainly loved Ms. Iva Kenaz’s other book My Melancholy Diary, also one of Ms. Johnson’s recommendations. So it didn’t surprise me that I loved this book, too, even though these two books had very little in common.

Both books were strong quick reads. Both books had strong young women as their main characters. And though I didn’t catch it (I actually read it in another review) both books are centered in Prague, the Czech Republic where the author is from. I will have to re-read this book to see where Talitha, (MC, The Witch Within) resides.

Now I have to pull away from the review a bit to let you all know what happened as I attempted to read this book. My Text-to-Speech didn’t track with the book. It would read ahead a few pages, but the pages didn’t turn so I was stuck reading the one page while TTS read future pages. I couldn’t manually flip the page or the TTS would turn off. That made the read less exciting than I believe it could have been. I will have to call Amazon to see if I can do anything about that. TTS was the whole reason I bought this Fire. Anyway, I didn’t call them while reading the book because I was still engrossed in Talitha’s life and didn’t want the real world to interrupt the read. Hopefully, this TTS didn’t mess up my experience of the book. I do plan to re-read it so I may raise the rating then. As it was, with the TTS problem, I had to read some pages two or three times each just so I didn’t miss anything. It only ruined the mood a little.

I would love my Wiccan friends to read this and let me know how accurate the chants and alphabet bits were. Seemed real enough for fiction. And due to reading another review I know the Cursed Areas do exist. So much of the story played out nicely. I was caught up in Talitha’s plight and then getting kidnapped. And though I hate stories that include the hatred directed to witches, or the ‘lesbian?’ people in the book it was during that historic time. Still I felt the main character could have been more forgiving of the skyclad dancers and their passions.

My biggest problem was how Talitha fell in love with her captor. Yes, he was the nicer of the guys but all I could think was this was a historic case of Stockholm Syndrome. And though it didn’t leave us on a real cliffhanger, much is left for a future book, I’m sure. Oh, and I was often struck at how adult Talitha was even though she was merely 14 or 15. But maybe back then people matured faster. So I didn’t let it stop the story. So with so many elements messed up for me in this read, I think I want to rate this a 4.5 rather than a full 5 stars. But I will read it again to make sure.

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