Book Review: Sea Witch by Sarah Henning

Title: Sea Witch
Author: Sarah Henning
Genre: Young Adult
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Release Date: July 31, 2018
Format: Hardcover
Pages: 368
Source: Personal Collection
Rating: ★★★★★

Wicked meets The Little Mermaid in the captivating origin story of the sea’s most iconic villainess, perfect for fans of Heartless and Dorothy Must Die.

Ever since her best friend Anna died, Evie has been an outcast in her small fishing town. Hiding her talents, mourning her loss, drowning in her guilt.

Then a girl with an uncanny resemblance to Anna appears on the shore, and the two girls catch the eyes of two charming princes. Suddenly Evie feels like she might finally have a chance at her own happily ever after.

But magic isn’t kind, and her new friend harbors secrets of her own. She can’t stay in Havnestad—or on two legs—without Evie’s help. And when Evie reaches deep into the power of her magic to save her friend’s humanity—and her prince’s heart—she discovers, too late, what she’s bargained away.

If you’ve ever seen The Little Mermaid, and you’ve ever wondered how Ursula came to be who she is, this is the book for you. Trust me.

I’ve long been a fan of The Little Mermaid, but it never occurred to me that perhaps the sea witch wasn’t always that way. A half human/half octopus I mean. Not evil. I just assumed she’d always been evil. It never occurred to me that the sea witch might have a back story. So Sea Witch was the back story I didn’t know I needed.

What happens when you have a mermaid bent on revenge, a witch who has to hide her magic from everyone – including her best friend, and a prince who loves one but not the other? A story that needs to be told, that’s what!

I loved the idea that The Little Mermaid‘s Sea Witch had a back story. I love books like this – where a particular character, especially the villian – gets a back story so we know what happened to make them a villian. So we can see that these bad guys weren’t always bad guys. Something happened to make them that way.

Sea Witch is Sarah Henning’s debut novel and I have to say, she knocked this one out of the park. This book is seriously one of the best back story novels I’ve read. The characters are likeable and perfect for the story.

Nik – the prince and Evie’s best friend, he makes for the perfect hero in this story.
Evie – a witch who can’t let anyone know she’s a witch, Nik’s best friend. Her story is a sad one.
Anna – Evie & Nik’s other best friend, sadly she’s not around for most of the book… or is she?
Annemette – the mermaid (you knew there had to be one here, right?) who tries to capture her true love’s heart.

By the time all the twists have played out, you’ll understand why the Sea Witch is who she is. This one got 5 out of 5 stars for me because this is an amazing debut novel and I can’t wait to see what Sarah Henning comes up with next.

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