Review: A Tangle of Spells

Written by Michelle Harrison
Cover Illustration: Melissa Castrillon
Published by Simon & Schuster

Everyone knows magic and trouble go hand in hand –

and we don’t want any trouble here, do we?


A dangerous spell cast over an unsuspecting village.
An enchanted painting locked in a hidden room.
A desperate race against time to break the spell before it’s too late…

It should have been a fresh start for the Widdershins. Finally free from the misty gloom of Crowstone and beginning a new life. But all is not as it seems in their postcard-pretty village. Their neighbours are acting strangely, and why do they flinch at the mere mention of magic?

The Widdershins sisters have their own secret: a set of enchanted nesting dolls with the power to render their user invisible. The sisters must use their wits – and their magic – if they’re to break the dark hold over the village, and save one of their own . . . but have they met their match this time?

A Tangle of Spells is the third book in the A Pinch of Magic series and it is just as magical, exciting and full of adventure and daring as the first two. 

The Widdershins sisters have finally left behind The Poacher’s Pocket Inn with their father and Granny, to move to the village of Pendlewick on the mainland.  However, their new home, Blackbird Cottage, is not exactly what they are expecting being rather dilapidated and having had some rather superstitious items left behind.  It is not long before Fliss, Betty and Charlie are exploring the area and are warned away from the rather sinister sounding Hungry Tree and Tick Tock Forest by the local shopkeeper.

They soon discover that idyllic-seeming Pendlewick has its own enigmatic and dangerous secrets.  This is a deliciously dark, intriguing and tensely atmospheric read that kept me engrossed throughout as the sisters find themselves in a race against time to thwart some sinister villains, to break a curse, or risk losing someone very dear to them.  I loved the interweaving of the village’s history into the story, the use of diary extracts and the dark fairy tale vibes.

As with the first two books, I adored the bond of sisterhood between the girls who have very different personalities but who clearly love and support each other.  Charlie is the youngest and is gutsy, daring and curious with an adorable word-muddling tendency.  Betty, the middle sister, is protective, determined and reassuring.  Despite the dangers they face and their natural fear, all of them show great courage and resilience.

This incredible story weaved its magic over me and kept me enchanted throughout.  I’m so looking forward to the Widdershins sisters’ next adventure.

Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for an e-ARC in exchange for my honest opinion.

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