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Spellbound (Spellbound #1)

3.91 of 5 stars 3.91  ·  rating details  ·  9,607 ratings  ·  1,010 reviews
What's a girl to do when meeting The One means she's cursed to die a horrible death?

Life hasn't been easy on sixteen-year-old Emma Connor, so a new start in New York may be just the change she needs. But the posh Upper East Side prep school she has to attend? Not so much. Friendly faces are few and far between, except for one that she's irresistibly drawn to— Brendan Sali

Paperback, 341 pages
Published June 21st 2011 by Harlequin Teen
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Community Reviews

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Wendy Darling
The beginning of this book is pretty good. There's a little bit of set up that explains Emma's nervousness over attending an exclusive school in a new city, plus some funny one-liners that make her seem pretty likable. But on page 15, Emma meets Brendan and everything goes downhill from there, because her whole life, including the scant paranormal aspects of this book, then revolves around getting him. Here is a sketch of the story, with some spoilers.

Here's what we know about the main character...more
I wrote in a post once that YA paranormals are becoming the Mills&Boon substitute for teenagers. In defence of that theory, I present this:


Stock Image: Leaning man grabs Swooning woman

And this:


Stock Image: Girl in Prom Dress, view from back

Tragically, most YA PNRs these days show just about the same amount of imagination and innovation in their writing as they do in their covers. But hold on! This is not necessarily a bad thing, sometimes.

Now let's be honest, nobody expects paperback romance...more
real rating for this book is 3.5 stars

So, to begin this review; after reading all of my friend's feelings on this book, I thought I really wasn't going to like it, maybe even despise it. The masochist in me forced me to read this book, thinking I was going to end up looking something like this:

Why do I do this to myself?!?! Why, Shultz?! whyyyyyyy?!? *runs away sobbing*

Truly, though, I was a little bit surprised and I did like the book. I didn't look like this:

[image error]
Wow that was freak...more
How, oh how did this get published? Actually, I know how… it’s called the Twilight effect. Look, there are bad books exploding off YA bookshelves everywhere. Ordinary Mary Sue’s with speshul powers, gay best friends, bitchy popular girls and jerky jock guys, sadly that all ain’t nothing new. (Oh god, and there go my vocabulary skills…) But we can thank Twilight for the popularity of insta-love novels. Forget books with heartbreakingly real romances or painful crushes or clumsy attempts to find t...more
After losing her mother and her twin brother and then having to endure a sorry drunken excuse for a step father, Emma Conner finally gets a fresh start in NY, living with her Aunt Christine and starting at the Vincent Academy school with her younger cousin, Ashley. Meeting the new kids at school isn't the easiest as Emma already gets a taste of what some of the kids are like, but she also meets some genuinely nice people and then there is Brendan, the one who looks like a rock star that Emma see...more
This book felt like a mash up of every well-worn YA trope. I'm so tired of these love stories where the characters' love is trueeternalalways just is. (view spoiler) does not mean you don't have to develop realistic relationships.

First I was drowning in instalove, only to be suffocated by major wish-fulfillment about a third of the way through. A hot, rich boyfriend who gives you a sapphire ring just because he's thinking of you and pic...more
Apr 19, 2011 Cory added it
What’s a girl to do when meeting The One means she’s cursed to die a horrible death?

Life hasn’t been easy on sixteen-year-old Emma Conner, so a new start in New York may be just the change she needs. But the posh Upper East Side prep school she has to attend? Not so much. Friendly faces are few and far between, except for one that she’s irresistibly drawn to—Brendan Salinger, the guy with the rock-star good looks and the richest kid in school, who might just be her very own white knight.

But even
Oh my this book was a wonderful surprise! I adore the story and most of all, this seems to be a Stand-Alone, no cruel torture cliffhanger end where you have to wait a year for an update! I read and finished the book in only one day, I couldn't stop once I started with this beautiful story of soul-mates.

This is the story of Emma, who couldn't have had a more horrible life. She lost her mother and her twin brother Ethan and her step-dead was a drunk that nearly got her killed. This is why she mov...more
Boy, this book started off so well… And then it crashed and burned in a smoldering fire.

The beginning of this book was fabulous. Emma is sarcastic, humorous, and snarky without overdoing it. I love how she doesn’t take any of the mean girl’s crap and spits it back in her face. There was this nice, subtle build up to the other magic plot and a sort of suspense about these cryptic warnings being delivered by her brother.

But after 100 or so pages, it took a turn into gag me now, shitville. This is...more
Cayla Kluver
The moment I knew Spellbound had me hooked was when the main character, Emma, compared the smell of a perfume to "a unicorn fart". Later on, the same perfume was described as "munchkin sweat". These are clear indications of brilliance.


First let's talk about Emma. What I loved about her was that she's been through a hell of a lot, but she's not your typical world-weary protagonist. She definitely wants a better life, she wants a chance to start over. She...more
There is so many things that I absolutely loved about this book! So first off I would just like to say Way To GO! for Cara Lynn Shultz on a job well done:)

I only had one slight issue with the writing. Nothing major. So lets' get that out of the way and move on to the awesome sauce. My only complaint is that I felt it could have used some better editing. And here is what I mean by that. Note this is just a example and not an actually sentence from the book.

"I saw the most perfect silky, smooth bl...more
Katie Stout
I'm generally not a fan of plots that involve (1) starcrossed lovers, (2) reincarnated lovers, (3) witches, or (4) any combination thereof. So I'm not sure what I was thinking when I picked up Spellbound. Maybe because I have been so pleased in the past by books published by HarlequinTeen that I thought they could do no wrong. I mean, they published The Iron Fey series, The Goddess Test, and The Girl in the Steel Corset, and I really liked all of those - so I guess I was hoping this would be sim...more
“Three and a half stars: A novel with a curse, star crossed lovers and more.
Three and a half stars: A novel with a curse, star crossed lovers and more.

Emma survived a rough couple of years. She lost her twin brother and mother in two years time. She was left living with her drunken stepfather, who nearly killed her in a car accident while driving drunk. Thankfully, her Aunt Christine, who is a recent widow with no children, takes her in and turns Emma's life around. Emma moves to New York and is...more
Again with the half stars lol. I'd give this 4-1/2 :)

So lately I have been complaining a lot about stories that, because there's sequel coming, end abruptly and don't seem to finish the storyline at all. I hate to be left hanging in an evil cliffie.

And that's why I love this book.

It reminded me of why I beg for more when there's something awesome. As far as I know, there is no sequel planned, but I want one. And not because the storyline wasn't wrapped up--it was. But I want MORE of them. More...more
Brianna Sprouse
Brianna Sprouse
I am doing my book report over the book "Spellbound" by: Cara Lynn Shultz. This is a paranormal romance book that touches on the subject of teen love and witchcraft. A young girl meets the love of her life and they seem to be soul-mates, but there's a horrible curse attached to their story. Emma and Brendan must fight to stay alive and stay together or their love story will continue to end generation after generation.
Emma and Brendan are soul-mates and are hopelessly in love with...more
Honestly, I don’t have much to say about this. The story didn’t trigger any strong emotions on my part so whenever I try to come up with something to say about it I’m drawing a total blank. The weird thing is, those of my friends who’ve read it, rated it somewhere between 1 and 5 stars (haha). Opinions seem to be somewhat varying ;-) Well, I for one, enjoyed this and was actually quite surprised because I didn't expect to like it as much as I did. It wasn’t anything overly special but it was pre...more
Spellbound was a surprisingly enjoyable read, very fun in some parts and very sweet in others.

The plot was pretty foreseeable (girl meets boy and has to fight against the forces of evil to live happily ever after with him) but I found the whole reincarnation thing very well constructed and organized.

I liked the author's prose, it gave lightness both to the story and to the main character's feelings and made the whole book very fluent.

I think the school part was way too cliched and it felt funny...more
After her alcoholic step-father endangers her one too many times, Emma goes to stay with her aunt on the Upper East Side. She's nervous about her fancy new private school, but quickly finds friends and a crush--the mysterious Brendan. Based on popping streetlights and a few dreams, Emma convinces herself that she's the reincarnation of Brendan's ancestor's long lost love. I was too bored by the paint-by-numbers YA love story and basic writing (which is bad when relating the present day but DIRE...more
Apr 30, 2011 Misty marked it as to-read
I don't know that I'll ever actually read this because honestly, the description doesn't appeal to me.
The cover, however, does, so I had to mark it.
It's okay to not like every book. I won't be able to like every book.

I have to tell myself this when I read a book I thought I was going to like and it turns out the book is horrible. The premise sounds so interesting! "Meeting The One means she's cursed to die a horrible death." WHOA, mega interesting.

Too bad the characters are annoying.

Emma, the main character, can't stand up for herself. I like girls to be strong and able to kick ass if they have to. Breakdowns are fine because it happens. B...more
Well, to begin with something I have to say that I liked the book. It gave me a couple of hours of light reading and disconnection of the world. That's worth something... like three stars...

Now, let's analyze it (or try to, better said).

I don't know what else to say about the plot that is not yet said. In short, it's predictable and full of clichés. And not really Paranormal Romance clichés, because besides the starcrossed lovers story and the "random discovery" in the middle of the book (aka "...more
Cheyenne Current
It was a bitter-sweet moment when I finished this book. I can honestly say that this book is probably going to be my favorite for a long time. Frst off, I loved the characters. The main characters, the supporting characters, hell, I even loved the villans! Well...I loved to hate them I mean. The main character of Emma Connor, I felt was real. She had real problems and a real past, but didn't let them rule her day to day life. Not to mention that she is hilarious. My favorite part of this book wa...more
Alex Bennett
Spellbound was getting lots of attention long before its release, and every praise of it had me reeling to read. When Spellbound finally found its way to me, I couldn’t wait to dive right in. Spellbound was quite different than what I was expecting, but it was also quite better than what I was expecting. Cara Lynn Shultz has created a spellbinding story that is sure to ensnare and enchant readers everywhere.

Being someone who adores New York City, I was so pleased to discover that Spellbound take...more
Peace Love and Reviews
Anything that has love and warning signs in the synopsis always gets me. There is something about the forbidden and the dangerous that makes me want to read it. It also helped that the first five chapters seems like a chick lit. (I hate watching chick in movies, but for some reason I love reading about it in books.) I almost forgot that there is a supernatural element in this book, until Emma dreamed that she was in another time with her dead brother Ethan warning her to stay away from HIM.

I was...more
Jul 19, 2011 Kellee rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommended to Kellee by: Provided by NetGalley for review
Reviewed at:

In the world of paranormal romance, Spellbound is a book full of cliches, but fights them and actually stands alone pretty strongly. Overall, a fun romance with action, legends and great music references!

Cliche 1: Emma moves to NYC to live with her rich aunt after a life of loss with her family and has to start school at a posh private school. At the private school she meets: 1) Kristen- A blonde *itchy girl who hates her right away; 2) Anthon...more
Spellbound focuses on witches, which I love, and past lives, which I don't, therefore I was a little unsure about reading this book. While both had their parts, the majorly important thing here was Emma and Brendan and how they cope with their feelings in the face of the knowledge they share.

What makes Spellbound work so well is the slow build up on all fronts. Nothing is shoved in your face early or often. The witchcraft is hinted at a few times but isn't fully expanded upon until it becomes ne...more
I had read mixed reviews about this book on Goodreads and was unsure of whether or not I would read it. But, I happened to see Spellcaster on Netgalley and decided to request it and if I was approved, I would buy Spellbound to read first. And I'm so glad I did, because I loved it.

Emma has had a very tragic life up to this and now, at the age of 16, she has gone to live with her aunt in New York. She is just starting at a private school, Vincent Academy, where she makes some good friends, and so...more
I have just added this book to my "favorites" shelf. It was amazing!

I felt so bad for Emma, she had not had the best life. She looked at moving in with her aunt as a new beginning. She did get a new life, but not exactly what she had expected.

My favorite character would have to be Ashley, Emma's cousin. She is your typical ditzy teenager. Boy crazy!!!! I enjoyed the relationship between Emma and Ashley and the fact that when Ashley was in trouble, she had turned to Emma.

Emma and Brendan...I was...more
Spellbound was one book that I was extremely excited about ever since I first heard about it. I absolutely loved the cover and the reviews were full of complements. After reading it I couldn't agree more with the rest of the world saying that this is an absolute must read!

After the deaths of Emma's brother and mother she was having a horrible time trying to get her life back on track. Then after an accident that almost takes her own life Emma's great-aunt offers her a chance to move to a new pl...more
Mundie Moms & Mundie Kids
Reviewed for MM's by Sophie-

A precious gift from a dead, twin brother. A boy who thinks he can have anyone he wants. A best friend who just happens to be a witch. And an aunt who gives you a chance to start over at a new school in a new city. These are the key elements that start Emma's story. Oh but wait, I forgot one very important item -- the dark haired, green eyed boy whose gaze Emma just can't seem to shake.

I love a story where love-at-first-sight makes sense and in the case of Brendan an...more
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Cara Lynn Shultz is the author of Spellbound and Spellcaster. She's a proud graduate of Fordham University and her work has appeared in Teen People,, Alternative Press, The Guardian UK, and countless posts on Facebook ( and Twitter (@CaraLynnShultz). She lives in her native New York City with her husband, cat, and eight million other people.
More about Cara Lynn Shultz...
Spellcaster (Spellbound, #2) The Dark World (Dark World, #1) Untitled (Dark World #2)

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