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June 21, 2020

The Girl and the Witch's Garden by Erin Bowman ~ a Review

by MK French

Piper Peavey didn't want to spend her summer at the Mallory Estate. It's cold, the garden is dead, random children are around, and the owner is purported to be a witch. The owner is Piper's grandmother, and Piper has to go to the estate when her father is too ill from cancer. Piper will have to try to unlock the secrets of the estate to try to save her father.

Amazon affiliate links are used on this site. A free book was provided for an honest review.

June 2020; Simon & Schuster; 978-1534461581
ebook, print (288 pages); middle grades fantasy
The Girl and the Witch's Garden is a book geared for middle-grade readers, and Piper is twelve years old. She introduced to the world of magic and affinities early in the novel, and that her mother had essentially abandoned her to work with children that have a magical affinity. When we meet her, Sophia has no emotional connection at all with Piper and chooses to leave the only meal she planned to eat with Piper and the other children. This was not an auspicious start, and I didn't like her at all. Even when it was clear she was manipulated and not all of her behavior was her fault, I still found her fairly unlikable.

The secret of the garden is an elixir of immortality that was hidden from all magi. Adults can't find it, and the other children at the estate hope to find it in order to stay and be adopted, but Piper wants to save her father, who is dying. Piper has to choose between her newfound friends and her father, and it's not an easy one to make. The average middle-grade student doesn't have to make a choice like this, but they do have to make difficult decisions as they balance the needs of their friendships and day to day lives against the needs of their family. This book also deals with death and dying from a child's perspective, as well as fears of being alone.

Buy The Girl and the Witch's Garden at Amazon

Born and raised in New York City, M.K. French started writing stories when very young, dreaming of different worlds and places to visit. She always had an interest in folklore, fairy tales, and the macabre, which has definitely influenced her work. She currently lives in the Midwest with her husband, three young children, and a golden retriever. 

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