Monday, September 7, 2015

Book Review- The Broken Spell by Erika McGann

Welcome to Middle Grade Monday! Today I am reviewing The Broken Spell by Erika McGann.
The Story-
Grace, Jenny, Rachel, Adie, and Una are training to become witches. However, they are growing bored with their teachers, Ms. Quinlan and Ms. Lemon, who refuse to teach them anything more than how to identify and use plants and herbs. When their new social studies teacher Ms. Gold arrives, and promises to teach them more practical magic, they secretly begin training with her.

While practicing their new spells, the girls go back in time to when Ms. Quinlan, Ms. Gold and Ms. Lemmon were students at the primer school. They all used to be good friends, but it is obvious in the present that they are not. Grace unfortunately has a side affect from casting the spell and continues to be sucked into the past and the teenage drama of her present magic teachers. After one such trip, she accidentally gets sucked back to the present with a creepy man on her coat tails.

Soon everything is going wrong and Jenny begins acting weird. Plus, the creepy man from the past keeps showing up. Who can Grace trust? and What is Ms. Gold up to?

My Thoughts-
A delightful and fun magical romp that takes middle grade readers on a ride involving trust and friendship. First off, the characters- I really enjoyed the story and the idea of these young girls wanting to become witches. Their reserved older teachers are too prudent, and just like normal kids, Grace's group wants more action. So, just like normal kids, they are led astray by promises of power and fun. It is easy to see why they side with Ms. Gold. Her way gives them all the results upfront. Now, Grace is an exception. She learns to think things through and to trust her instincts. She also tries to put things right when she makes a mistake.

My one comment would be that it was hard to remember who was who as we time traveled back and forth. The teachers are only referred to as Ms. so and so in the present, so when it was the past and they went by their first names, I got thrown off. It took me 3/4 of the book to stop flipping back to find out who was talking.

The plot is great and moves along at a swift enough speed that young readers won't grow bored. The author does a great job with unraveling the plot twists so that the reader is wondering who the good and bad guys are until the final chapters. The story is believable and the setting, a school, age relatable.

I give it 4 stars!


  1. This one sounds like fun. Witches and time travel should appeal to many young readers. Thanks for featuring.

  2. I do get frustrated when I have to flip back in a book to find out who is talking. That said, this sounds like a good story and I will check it out. Thanks for the review.