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In Lizbet Lenz’s world the sun goes around the earth God speaks directly to his worshippers goblins haunt cellars and witches lurk in forests Disaster strikes when Lizbet's charming scoundrel father is thrown into a dungeon by the tyrant Hengest Wolftrow To free him Lizbet Half Witch Half Witch how do I love thee? Let me count the wayshappy sighGenuinely though I have no idea where or how I found this book I can find no mention of it on my favourite book blogs so presumably none of them recommended it to me My friends have never heard of it It appeared on none of the newsletters I subscribe to Where did it come from? Did I just happen to stumble through the wardrobe while browsing and come upon it by pure chance? Did I wake up one morning with it already waiting for me on my ereader? Did the Pixie ueen descend from on high in her dolphin drawn clamshell carriage and present it to me then wipe my memory?I have no clue And that air of mystery and subtle magic is perfect appropriate because I'm not sure I've ever read anything sosoWords fail meIn a lot of ways Half Witch reminds me of Catherynne Valente's The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making and if you've ever been subject to my impassioned do you have time to talk about our lady and saviour Catherynne M Valente rhapsody you'll know that's high praise indeed There's some stylistic differences Half Witch is written in third person Girl has an omniscient narrator talking directly to the reader and Valente's September is far like Strix than she is Lizbet Half Witch's main character but in some fundamental ways they're very similar They're both allegedly middle grade books that are deep and clever and beautiful enough to gut punch adults too maybe even gut punch adults harder than they do younger readers; they both follow young girls discovering they can be or already are far than they thought they could be They both read like fairytales for the modern age capturing some elusive ancient indescribably mythopoeic uality while telling stories that are like nothing you've ever come across before They're both pure magicBut Half Witch is darker Not so dark that I wouldn't give it to my little sister I plan on putting a copy in her hands the first chance I get but dark enough that I might have hesitated to give it to her a few years ago And I think this is important dark enough to be exactly what I needed right now I love Valente and I always will; I will never stop loving her Fairyland series And it's not that her Fairyland doesn't have its own painful revelations too But Half Witch is the book I needed right now It's a fairytale for those of us who are tired and bruised inside and can't face at the moment the stories that sparkle and glitter I don't know how to put this without sounding like Fairyland is anything but the rich and complex series it is Fairyland is not fluffy But it's too obviously bright and hopeful and full of wonder for me to take when I don't have the strength to believe in it When I'm tired and hurting and can't figure out how to wash the cynicism from my eyesThat's where Half Witch comes in Because it's not a depressing book Not at all But it is a story I could trust and follow and believe in all the way through the darkness and out the other side It's a story that honestly almost tricks you into feeling hope again believing in the world again It's a story that acknowledges and doesn't flinch away from how unbelievably awful and terrifying things can be how low you can fall how hopeless everything can sometimes seem and then shows you how to grit your teeth and snarl and fight your way back up not with violence but with the sheer teeth bared determination to be good and do good and make things right It's a story that reminds us that goodness is not bloodless but neither is it blood thirsty It's a story about learning to be brave and clever and standing up for yourself and your friends; about being terrified beyond belief and Doing It Anyway It's also wickedly clever and subtly sneaky and full of references to or ideas pulled from older stories or myths reworked in truly incredible ways The worldbuilding is freaking amazing It made me laugh far than once; it made me gleeful; it had me glued to the pages and literally breathless multiple times It's gross and beautiful and soft and sharp part nightmare and part dream and all unputdown able It's the perfect perfect perfect fairytale esue story the world needs at right this momentSo I don't know how or where you found it what path led you to this book and this review But it did not lead you wrong
Half Witch Must cross the Montagnes du Monde globe girdling mountains that reach to the sky a journey no one has ever survived and retrieve a mysterious book Lizbet is desperate and the only one who can help her is the unpleasant and sarcastic witch girl Strix As the two girls journey Fantasy fiction often seems to me like sci fi that plays it safe but in a good way There's a trick to taking familiar elements of folklore especially Western folklore and creating from them a world that feels original and surprising The reader has the comfort of familiar landmarks but also some of the pleasures of mystery and wonderIn Half Witch John Schoffstall does uite a good job of scrambling the familiar into a fresh brew We meet Lizbet Lenz the daughter of a kindly flimflam man in the far eastern reaches of the Holy Roman Empire The setting is medievalish and the world feels almost historical though a passing reference to goblins warns the reader that this is not going to be historical fiction Lizbet's father is imprisoned for accidentally conjuring a rain of mice and her efforts to gain his release soon plunge Lizbet into a world of magic and adventure that test her character and survival skills to their limits She goes on a uest accompanied by a strange witchy creature named Strix witches in this story are half alive creatures made from found objects amoral and magical but limited in their abilities and emerges from the journey damaged in some ways but made whole in othersI enjoyed the inventiveness of the twists and turns of the story but felt sometimes that magical creatures were dragged in for the convenience of the plot than because they were plausible ingredients of the world building The most interesting element for me was the way Schoffstall used Lizbet's pious Christianity in the story God becomes a character rather ineffectual and frustrating and Jesus inspires and inhabits her in a literal way when she needs Him most It's not preachy but not shallow either Maybe talking myself into 35 stars
John Schoffstall » Half-Witch kindle
kindle ´ Half-Witch Ô read µ john schoffstall Ù In Lizbet Lenz’s world the sun goes around the earth God speaks directly to his worshippers goblins haunt cellars and witches lurk in forests Disaster strikes when Lizbet's charming scoundrel father is thrown into a dungeon by the tyrant Hengest Wolftrow To freOver the mountains and into the lands of wonder beyond on the run from goblins powerful witches and human criminals Lizbet discovers to her horror that Strix's magic is turning Lizbet into a witch too Meanwhile a revolution in Heaven is brewingThe book will pub in summer 20 Read for an island promptHalf Witch 45This is one of the strangest books I’ve read recently and maybe ever There’s God but also witches goblins and magic One of the main characters is incredibly religious and the other is a witch Overall though I really liked how this worked together Because with all this magical and spiritual mayhem going on the central core of this book is the friendship between Strix and Lizbet Story Summary The story begins with Lizbet witnessing a rain of mice Her father is a bit of a con man and his latest con has not gone well This is the last straw and her father finds himself in prison To get him out Lizabet goes searching for a magical book that the ruler of her city is searching for She finds herself somewhat unwillingly in the company of a witch called Strix Together they face the elements goblins crazy sewer people and numerous witches Favorite Characters I loved both Lizabet and Strix Over the course of this book they both went through some great character development Strix in particular was shown so so much through her journey with Lizabet Witches are made by other witches and they’re generally very selfish Strix learns about kindness and friendship with Lizabet and I loved it so much These two start out the book basically hating one another but by the end they’re so close I really think their friendship is what brought this book to 45 Breaking and Making Witch Magic In this world the magic of witches is first and foremost the ability to craft beings from the materials around them They’re not like humans and regular animals though They’re tougher obviously less human I thought this magic was so interesting and seeing how it worked through Strix was so interesting Of course each witch has their own abilities too Strix for instance can knit herself into the shadows and become hidden to mortals Others can control and form storms etc Religion There’s no way to talk about this book and not mention just how much of Christianity is in this book It’s not a very serious version of Christianity but it’s there In this world communion allows someone to literally speak to God Christ or The Holy Spirit Devils are actual beings that roam the world torturing and generally making a mess of things I didn’t really mind this element but I can definitely see why it wouldn’t be for everyone I really don’t know who I’d recommend this book too It’s funny and it’s got a weird mix of spirituality and fantasy If you’re looking for an incredibly strange book maybe check this out?