01 April 2010

"Casting Spells" by Barbara Bretton

Casting Spells (Sugar Maple, #1) Casting Spells by Barbara Bretton

Genre: supernatural romance
On my TBR list? Yes

Book 1 of a series

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Book synopsis from Goodreads:

Sugar Maple looks like any Vermont town, but it’s inhabited with warlocks, sprites, vampires, witches—and an ancient secret. And Chloe Hobbs, owner of Sticks & String, a popular knitting shop, has a big secret too. She’s a sorcerer’s daughter in search of Mr. Right—and she’s found him in Luke MacKenzie, a cop investigating Sugar Maple’s very first murder. Bad news is he’s 100% human, which could spell disaster for a normal future with a paranormal woman like her.

When I picked up this novel, I expected something along the lines of the Sookie Stackhouse series: a mystery in a magical world with a little sex and romance thrown in. Instead, I found it to be a vanilla romance. There was a drizzle of supernatural chocolate syrup and a knitting cherry on top, but it was still vanilla ice cream underneath. Luckily, I like vanilla so this was a quick enjoyable read for me, even if it was a little predictable.

Despite the fact that I am a knitter, the knitting component was my least favorite part. The name-dropping of various yarn brands and knitting terms didn't feel organic; it was as if the author was trying to earn her "knit cred" by giving a few shout-outs to other knitters. I know from reading the blogs that she's contributed to that Barbara Bretton is a real knitter and not a poser, so I'm surprised that the knitting didn't mesh with the story more thoroughly.

I'm hoping that the second book in the series, Laced with Magic, has a little more depth to it. With this book, I felt like I knew from the beginning how everything was going to work out -- not just "girl gets boy" part but even the supernatural subplot was rather predictable. Now that the heroine has her man, I'm curious to see what Bretton focuses on.

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