cover image The Very Secret Society of Irregular Witches

The Very Secret Society of Irregular Witches

Sangu Mandanna. Berkley, $16 trade paper (336p) ISBN 978-0-593-43935-7

A misfit witch finds her place in the world in this utterly enchanting fantasy from Mandanna (A War of Swallowed Stars). Witch Mika Moon has never felt like she belonged; as an orphaned child, she was raised by a controlling older witch named Primrose and educated by a succession of nannies, each of whom was whisked away before they could realize Mika’s power. She’s never told anyone her secret, but as an adult she takes a risk by posting videos online in which she “pretends” to be a witch. It’s all harmless fun—until retired actor Ian Kubo-Hawthorn recognizes her as the real deal. He invites her to Nowhere House, home to a found family working together to raise three young, untrained orphan witches. The children’s unchecked magic has become impossible to contain, and Ian recruits Mika to become the trio’s live-in magic tutor. But not everyone is pleased with the arrangement: “devastatingly handsome” Jamie Kelly, the house librarian, is hyperprotective of the children, and despite the immediate heat between him and Mika, he’s determined not to let her melt his icy exterior. Mandanna crafts a cast of winningly quirky characters, each with their own part to play in Mika’s path to belonging. The masterfully shaded relationships between Nowhere House’s residents give rise to plenty of touching moments sure to tug on readers' heartstrings. This charming romantic fantasy is a gem. Agent: Penny Moore, Aevitas. (Aug.)