Genre: paranormal cozy mystery
Darcy Merriweather and her sister, Harper, hail from a long line of witches, who have the power to grant wishes using spells. They’ve come to Enchanted Village in Salem, Massachusetts, to join the family business, but they soon find themselves knee-deep in murder…
Until three weeks ago, Darcy and Harper were working dead-end jobs and trying to put their troubles behind them. Then their aunt Velma delivered a bomb-shell: They’re actually Wishcrafters – witches with the power to grant wishes with a mere spell. Wanting a fresh start, they head to their aunt’s magic-themed tourist town to master their newfound skills. But their magic fails them when a wannabe witch turns up dead – strangled with Aunt Ve’s scarf – and Ve’s sweetheart, Sylar, is found looming of the body. Ve is standing by her man, but Darcy overheard Sylar wish that the victim would disappear – forever. With Harper distracted by her handsome new crush, Darcy is determined to sleuth her way to the truth. But it’ll take more than a wish to unravel this mystery…
Heather Blake is another penname for cozy mystery author Heather Webber. I follow her on the Cozy Chicks blog for years now, and when she started a new paranormal cozy mystery series, I knew I had to have that book. It took me a while to buy it, but when it went down in price, I pounced on it. And I totally do not regret it, as I really enjoyed this story. On her website, the author states she is a fan of the series Bewitched and I dream of Jeannie, which are also some of my oldtime favourites.
Darcy and her sister Harper have moved to Salem, to live with their aunt Ve. After the death of their father 4 months ago, she finally told them they are witches. Their father new, but did not want them to know. So now they are both ready to start over. Darcy had a bad divorce two years ago, and Harper has run into some trouble with the law. Darcy happily embraces being a witch, working for her aunt at Make A Wish, while Harper is still sceptic, and prefers doing other things. There are many more witches, or rather Crafters in the village, and they will have to find out who is a Crafter and who is a normal human on their own. But if they tell a human they are witches, they will loose their powers. Their children can be witches though.
After three weeks in town, Darcy feels like she knows most people already, and is looking forward to the town council meeting that evening. But first she has to play the toothfairy for a little girl. Not something Darcy has done before, but how hard can it be, dressing up as a fairy in pink and glitter, and exchange a tooth for a little embroidered baggy with coins in them? Until the little girl wakes up and starts screaming: “stranger danger”! The girls parents are going through a difficult time, and both want different things for their daughter. And when the grandmother wishes her son to really know what it means living without his wife and daughter, she wishes them away on a vacation. And Darcy has to grant that wish. When Dennis finds out he cannot just wish them back again, he is furious with Darcy.
There is some trouble in town with a pickpocket lately, which is bad for business, as the tourists will stay away when news gets out. And so they have hired Nick Sawyer, a retired policeman who recently moved with his little girl to the village, to look into things. The local chief of police spends his day on the golf green, instead of working to keep the village safe. Something that is bound to change after the next election! Darcy and Nick are instantly attracted to each other, but they are both not looking for a new relationship. But perhaps Nick’s little girl has something to say about that as well!
Then a local wannabe-witch gets murdered, and aunt Ve’s boyfriend, also the Mayor of the town, gets arrested for the murder. Which means that Ve has no more time to teach Darcy the ropes, and Darcy is left to find things out on her own, getting her in a bit of trouble with the Elder.
I absolutely loved this book. It is filled with great characters, lots of dynamics and even talking familiars! A mouse dressed as a gentleman, working in the local clothing shop. A bird who knows all the classic movies. And Darcy is certain there is a familiar in their own home as well, even though their aunt won’t confirm or deny. Is it their aunt’s cat? Or their own little doggy Missy (Miss Demeanour) whom Harper rescued from a bad petshop? Only time will tell.
It was fun seeing Darcy make friends, and learn who is a Crafter, and who is not, and all the different types of Crafters. She has to find out who the real murderer is if only to help her aunt. Harper is also a great character. Of course she falls for the wrong guy, but she does find out what she wants to do with her life.
I am looking forward to the next book in this series, which will be published in August 2012.
© 2012 Reviews by Aurian