Series: The Witch Hunter #1
Release Date: 4th June 2015
Publisher: Hachette Children's Books
Add it: Goodreads
Witches, watch out... Half Bad meets Kill Bill in this incredible new supernatural series.
Sixteen-year-old Elizabeth Grey doesn't look dangerous. A tiny, blonde, wisp of a girl shouldn't know how to poison a wizard and make it look like an accident. Or take out ten necromancers with a single sword and a bag of salt. Or kill a man using only her thumb. But things are not always as they appear. Elizabeth is one of the best witch hunters in Anglia and a member of the king's elite guard, devoted to rooting out witchcraft and bringing those who practice it to justice. And in Anglia, the price of justice is high: death by burning.
When Elizabeth is accused of being a witch herself, she's arrested and thrown in prison. The king declares her a traitor and her life is all but forfeit. With just hours before she's to die at the stake, Elizabeth gets a visitor - Nicholas Perevil, the most powerful wizard in Anglia. He offers her a deal: he will free her from prison and save her from execution if she will track down the wizard who laid a deadly curse on him.
As Elizabeth uncovers the horrifying facts about Nicholas's curse and the unwitting role she played in its creation, she is forced to redefine the differences between right and wrong, friends and enemies, love and hate... and life and death.
Just gonna start this off by saying this book was so bad I literally skim read from about ten percent in right to the end because I just couldn’t bear to actually suffer through entire paragraphs of terrible everything.
The Witch Hunter presents itself as a historical fiction blended with fantasy elements but let me put a stop to that right here and tell you right now that if you go in expecting those things you are likely to be very, very disappointed with what you get. This is an incredibly generic YA novel which follows an almost textbook plot of ~special snowflake~ bland main teenage female discovering that she is UNIQUE and then doing literally nothing to prove that. You also get a love triangle, just for funsies and an entire cast of male characters with two token female characters, one of whom is the lead and the other acting as an antagonist for a chunk of the novel because teenage girls can never be friends. Those are, like, the rules of feminism!
Here are the things I liked about this book:
1. The cool vampire (undead/zombie/who the fuck even knows) romance with the side girl. I liked both of their characters and this novel would’ve been so much better if it had been about them but ALAS. We are stuck with wallpaper for a main character.
Here are the things I didn’t like about this book:
1. Literally everything else.
I didn’t care for the historical period it was set in because the author clearly didn’t care about it either. I am someone who generally really enjoys historical fiction in any capacity but this book was too much, even for me. It was lacklustre and failed to pull me in at all. I disliked every single character apart from the two I mentioned above. Was there any need for so many dudes to be in a single book that is supposedly about witches? We just don’t know. It also immensely grated on me that the main conflict was ostensibly about Elizabeth, the aforementioned wallpaper, being a witch hunter until she discovers she is a witch and then it’s like, WELL, I don’t mind the rampant murder of innocent women just because they’re different but now that I AM a witch I totally deserve special treatment! Which she gets, over and over again. She’s a horrible main character and I found myself not wanting to spend any time inside of her head at all.
In conclusion I can safely say that is the one of the worst books I have read this year, and while reading is very subjective I really do think there are far better books out there for people to enjoy.