Bad Witch Burning

Jessica Lewis. Delacorte, $17.99 (368p) ISBN 978-0-593-17738-9
Katrell Davis, 16, is at the end of her rope living with her unemployed mother and her mother’s perpetually abusive boyfriend. Failing most of her classes, she supplements her meager income flipping burgers by communicating with the dead for pay. During a séance with her best friend Will, Will’s late grandmother cautions that if Katrell continues to contact the deceased, she’ll burn herself and everything around her. Following a violent encounter with her mother’s boyfriend that leaves her beloved dog dead, Katrell discovers a frightening new dimension to her power—she can resurrect the departed. Despite dire warnings against using her burgeoning powers, Katrell becomes desperate for cash when her work hours are cut and she discovers that her mother has squandered the money meant for rent and the electric bill. So she takes her chances, embarking on a series of 10 resurrections, each more financially lucrative than the last. But with great power comes unwanted attention—and unintended consequences that show Katrell just what it means for everything to burn. As intense emotions leap from the page in every vibrantly depicted scene, Lewis’s YA debut portrays both Katrell’s hopeless love for her manipulative mother and her fear of abject poverty with stinging realism. Katrell and former foster child Will are two kind, passionate, stubborn Black teens who want only the best for each other after having endured the worst. Their wonderful connection anchors this chillingly supernatural tale, easily breathing life into its world full of ghosts. Ages 12–up. Agent: Holly Root, Root Literary. (Aug.)
Reviewed on : 06/17/2021
Release date: 08/24/2021
Genre: Children's
Library Binding - 352 pages - 978-0-593-17740-2
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Audio book sample courtesy of Penguin Random House Audio
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