The Babysitters Coven

Kate Williams. Delacorte, $18.99 (368p) ISBN 978-0-5257-0737-0
Seventeen-year-old Esme Pearl’s staid life filled with babysitting gigs takes a turn for the weird when she begins to worry she might be causing things to happen with her mind. First a drink spills on a chauvinist classmate; then a ball takes out her bully in gym class. Concerned that she might be losing her grip on reality like her mother, who is in a long-term care facility, Esme tries to ignore the unexplainable incidents. Then new student Cassandra Heaven joins the babysitting club Esme shares with her best friend, Janis, and opens Esme’s mind to a world of magic and witchcraft, shifting her entire understanding of the world and her mother. Witty, sarcastic Esme’s voice is well pitched, whether she’s discussing her desire to be normal or her growing awareness of her heritage and affinity for magic. Williams’s liberal use of slang may cause the novel to date quickly, but together with references to modern politics and pop culture, it grounds the story in the present moment, adding nuance to the premise and deepening connections for contemporary teens. Ages 12–up. (Sept.)
Reviewed on : 08/14/2019
Release date: 09/17/2019
Genre: Children's
Library Binding - 368 pages - 978-0-525-70738-7
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Audio book sample courtesy of Penguin Random House Audio
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