I read Hex: A Witch and Angel Tale by Ramona Wray a little while ago now as part of a blog tour that I never took part in. The truth is, I felt uneasy about my reaction to the book and didn’t feel that I could be part of the tour. First and foremost, I should warn you that this is a very mixed review and initially the premise sounded interesting. Here’s the synopsis:
“Like most girls at Rosemound High School, seventeen-year-old Lily Crane is acutely aware of Ryder Kingscott. Hands down the cutest guy in school, Ryder is cool, mysterious, and utterly untouchable...especially for Lily. For when she touches someone, Lily instantly learns all about their lives. And while such a skill might seem nifty, in truth it is wrecking Lily's life. So she is shocked when Ryder asks her out - and even more shocked to discover he has a rival. Lucian Bell is the gorgeous new kid who can't take his eyes off of Lily. Being pursued by two hotties should make a girl happy, but Lily is skeptical. The boys act as if they've met before, hating each other with a passion that could only be rooted in a dark, dangerous past. A past full of terrible secrets. The kind of secrets that could get a girl killed.”
Let’s start by talking about the book cover. It is incredibly cute and very “Bewitched” like but in my honest opinion, I don’t think it fits the story. The cover is very girly and fluffy but the story is much darker than that.
Now I’m going to tell you why this book was incredibly frustrating for me. This book was frustrating only because I could see the potential behind it. It read like an unfinished draft that needed a little bit more work on it before releasing it into the wild. There were flashes of brilliance, paragraphs that were perfect but they weren’t consistent. Sure, there were a few spelling and grammar errors but nothing that a good editor couldn’t pick up. They may be little annoyances but I never let things like that detract from the story. Chapters one and two ended with the same line and I’m not sure if this was a mistake or not but for me, it didn’t work. Also, I thought that some of the dialogue in the first half didn’t seem realistic and there were a couple of times in the latter half where I thought “huh?” at some of it. Not because I didn’t understand the situation but I couldn’t understand WHY a particular character would say what they did.
The best part of the book for me was the last 13 chapters. This was the build towards the climax but also the first time we really saw action or indeed a display of the power that Lily allegedly had. You may find this hard to believe but as a character, I really did like her. I thought she had an authentic teenage voice and I enjoyed her humour and perspective on things. I also enjoyed the twists and turns in the tale that I hadn’t seen coming. The added element of a “Halfling” was a very interesting concept which I enjoyed.
Despite my mixed reaction, there was definitely something about the book though as I kept on reading and despite aforementioned nuances, the further I read, the more I wanted to carry on. At the end of the day, there were definitely elements I enjoyed but it frustrated me so because I know it could have been so much better.
Hex: A Witch and an Angel Tale was published in April, 2011. Ramona Wray is an independent author and you can visit her website here.