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Bewitching Season (Leland Sisters #1)

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3.70  ·  Rating Details  ·  4,491 Ratings  ·  437 Reviews
In 1837 London, young daughters of viscounts pined for handsome, titled husbands, not careers. And certainly not careers in magic. At least, most of them didn’t.

Shy, studious Persephone Leland would far rather devote herself to her secret magic studies than enter society and look for a suitable husband. But right as the inevitable season for "coming out" is about to begin,
...more
Hardcover, First Edition, 352 pages
Published April 29th 2008 by Henry Holt and Co. (BYR)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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snowplum
Apr 28, 2015 snowplum rated it it was ok
I wasn't especially enthusiastic about this book. Sometimes it's charming, and I smiled a few times at clever bits (most often including the main character's precocious little brother Charles), but it suffers from a couple of fundamental problems which keep it from being a book that I would strongly recommend or keep to read over and over.

First, it has the surprisingly common problem of being a book set in a world with magic, but then not having all that much magic in it. Any number of things co
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Angelc
Jun 13, 2009 Angelc rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 5-stars
This was a great teen historical with just the right amount of magic and a great romance!! The romance was by far my favorite part of the book, I really fell in love with Lochinvar Seton! Another cute aspect of the story was the twin's little brother. He was adorable and provided a fresh perspective! I must admit I skimmed some of the royal intrique portions of the book, but the romance more than made up for any slow points!! Great read for lovers of YA and historical romance!!
Brillare
Jan 05, 2009 Brillare rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this book; it wasn't perfect or an all time favorite, but it was still a pretty great read.

Pros:
1. Romantic. So, the romance was predictable, but it was still very fun to read. Lochinvar was suitably noble and passionate. :D
2. The conflict wasn't too unique - someone gets kidnapped, girls try to save kidnapee and uncover larger more serious situation. However, the magic, era, and setting pulled it off successfully and made it interesting.

Cons:
1. Persy would get very annoying wi
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Jessica
May 21, 2008 Jessica rated it it was ok
Shelves: ya
Set in Regency England, this book follows twin witches Penelope and Persephone as they embark on their first Season. After their magic instructing governess is kidnapped, the two begin to investigate her disappearance, while also dealing with the social obligations of the ton. They eventually uncover a plot that threatens the royalty, their governess, and their own lives.

First off, I really enjoy Regency romance novels. I love Georgette Heyer. I know most of the words on the Regency Lexicon webs
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Rhiannon
May 07, 2008 Rhiannon rated it liked it
Shelves: ya-books
I *loved* the idea behind the book. I even liked the plot. I HATED Persephone, the twin this book focuses on. Her self-denigrating attitude gets old REAL fast.. within the first 50 pages or so. AND IT DOESN'T STOP. EVER. Most of the storytelling is her self-loathing monologues talking about how ugly she is (compared to her IDENTICAL twin), how lame she is, how she'll never be good enough. I wanted to scream through 90% of this book. I kept reading hoping she would gain her confidence (she didn't ...more
Jennifer Wardrip
Reviewed by Tasha for TeensReadToo.com

Persephone and Penelope Leeland are the twin daughters of a well-known English viscount and are getting ready to be thrown into their first season. While you couldn't tell the girls apart by looking at them, if you talked to them you would know that they are completely different.

All Penelope can talk about is the upcoming balls that the girls are planning on going to and the numerous gowns that she is going to wear. She loves all thoughts that have to do wi
...more
Rachael
Apr 29, 2008 Rachael rated it it was amazing
Persephone and Penelope Leland are twins in early nineteenth century London. To the rest of the world, they are beautiful young women who are about to make their debut into society and then search for suitable husbands. But what most people don’t know is that the women of the Leland family are known for their magical abilities. The twins study magic under the careful tutorage of their governess Ally.

While they are usually very close, Persephone and Penelope start to have secrets from each other.
...more
Clare Cannon
Mar 25, 2011 Clare Cannon rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: 10-16 years (girls)
Shelves: 13-15yrs
"A good book to pick up for several hours of enjoyable escape".

Inspired by Austen and the Regency writers, this novel is set in England at the time when Victoria was Princess. In addition to the romantic appeal of seasons, balls, beaux and female friends (or competition), a layer of mystery is added by the introduction of magic.

The interesting and relatively original plot (as fairytales go) offers a sweet narrative that has some substance too. Friendship, honesty, honour and courage are all give
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Robin Witt
I quite enjoyed this book. It was fast paced and easy to finish in a couple of evenings. It had multiple plot threads which all came together well at the end. The romance thread got to be a bit annoying during the middle parts of the book, but the resolution was nicely symmetrical.
I accidentally started reading this trilogy out of sequence, and overall, I found the protagonist of the third book, Courtship and Curses a Lot more likable than Persy Leland was in this.
Betsy
Dec 09, 2007 Betsy rated it it was ok
Sort of the poor man's "Sorcery and Cecelia". Rather predictable, a smattering of loose ends, and a protagonist who whines too much and has so little smarts that you almost begrudge her her happy ending. Oh, and woe betide the lower classes. They get pretty short shrift here. Fun enough to read but it doesn't hold up to close scrutiny.
Regina Scott
Jan 06, 2015 Regina Scott rated it it was amazing
Brilliant beginning to a wonderful series for young adults and adults alike.
Bettielee
Aug 21, 2015 Bettielee rated it really liked it
3.8956789 out of 5 magical stars…. I know that’s random

I love magic. I love Victorian England. And this book starts at the very beginning of that period, with the woman who gave the period its name, the young Queen Victoria, taking the throne. Oh, and there’s magics.

Twins, Persephone and Penelope Leland, have come to London for their coming out, that time when a young woman is presented to the King (or Queen) and enters society. Penelope can’t wait. This time is a whirl of dresses and balls, tea
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Krys
I really wanted to love this book, but it fell flat about half way through. The beginning was brilliant, the lead up of the girl's introduction into fashionable society, the practice of magic with Ally and her resulting kidnapping, and the mystery about it all. Too bad that Persy decided to cast a spell on her love interest... that was one ridiculous plot arc... let's cast a spell on Lochinvar to make him fall in love with me when I'm drinking, feel bad once I sober up and distance myself from h ...more
Krystle
Jun 05, 2012 Krystle rated it really liked it
I read this book so long ago that I don’t remember what really happened.

I for one sure remember it being fun in that there was some fun magic times and some awesome romantic tension. Kind of like The Season just less on the burning stares and romantic tension – if you’re in the mood to read something in a similar vein, then this would be the right choice.

Persy, though, was super annoying. She’s this passive, self-conscious, and has this whole sacrificial mood about her all the time type of char
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Kristi
Oct 26, 2008 Kristi rated it really liked it
Shelves: books-i-own
Persephone and Penelope Leland are about to be thrust into their coming out season! These girls may look alike but that is as far as their likeness goes. They couldn’t be more different from each other. While Penelope can’t wait to start her season and longs for dancing at wondrous balls, Persephone would rather be reading a book or studying her magic.

But there is much more than their upcoming season that the girls must worry about. It seems that their governess, Ally is missing. They only clue
...more
Alexis
May 04, 2009 Alexis rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Darlingmisty, Shannon, girls 10+
Set at the beginning of the Victorian era, Bewitching Season finds identical twins Persy (Persephone) and Pen (Penelope) Leland entering their first London season. The girls are beautiful, from a good family, and have impressive dowries, which should make it easy for them to find suitable husbands. However, they also share a big secret: women in the Leland family are known for being born with strong magical ability, and the twins are no exception.

When their governess - and magic teacher - Ally
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Adriana
The book reminded me of The Season (Maclean) and A Great and Terrible Beauty (Bray). As you read it the story pulls you in further and further into the characters and the intrigue in the plot. Persephone and Penelope are twins that are about to start their first London season. They are also witches who have been getting trained by their governess who is also a witch. Only their younger brother knows that they are witches as they practice some of their spells on him. Persy (Persephone) is far mor ...more
Kathy ~ Bookworm Nation
I am a bit hesitant to write a review of this book. I actually did really enjoy the book, but can’t help thinking of a few things that bothered me. I thought the story idea was fun, but would have preferred if the whole thing had taken place in a fictional land instead of England. The magic in the story was really underdeveloped and could have been left out entirely. I think if it had taken place in a fictional place then the magic element could have been used a lot more. I started out liking Pe ...more
Bridget R. Wilson
Jane Austen with magic. Enough said. Read it!

In 1837 London, most girls have qualms about their first season. Will they be popular? Will they have suitors? Will they receive a proposal? Twins Pen and Persy Leland have much bigger worries. Not only are they about to come out, they are also witches. Concealment of their craft is paramount. The disappearance of their governess and fellow witch Ally spurs them to action Who abducted her? Why? Add to this Persy's love for childhood friend Lochinvar
...more
Jenna
May 16, 2011 Jenna rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: lovers of Sorcery and Cecelia or The Enchanted Chocolate Pot
Shelves: 12-and-up, fantasy
This book is about two girls who are 'coming out' in the the British society. A difficult task in and of itself, but to tack on the all the gowns and gloves, the twin girls are witches, a feared art punishable by death. While dodging suitors and magical enemies, the girls, Persy and Pen struggle to establish themselves successfully in society while simultaneously uncovering a plot to take over the crown.

I thought this book was extremely refreshing after all the trash I have been reading. It was
...more
Ashley (Bound to Love YA)
Mar 31, 2016 Ashley (Bound to Love YA) rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya, romance, regency
This book is mostly fluff - fluffy magic, fluffy romance, fluffy plot. However it still makes a good, quick read on a Sunday afternoon.

Is it predictable? Yep. Is the romance adorable even though you know exactly how it will end up? Yep.

As long as you go in understanding that this is your basic Magical-governess-gets-kidnapped-so-teens-must-save-her-and-uncover-a-greater-plot-while-still-making-it-to-their-ton-debut storyline, then you shouldn't be too disappointed at all.

Final Score: 3.5/5 Star
...more
QNPoohBear
Though technically not a Regency, it follows the same rules as teenage twins move in and out of London Society. This book contains a twist: the Misses Leland have magic powers and their governess has gone missing and it's up to the twins to save her and rescue the country from potential disaster.It sounds kind of silly the way I wrote it but this novel is incredibly good at the magic elements are subtle and believable. There's humor (a pesky little brother), two lively twins, a hunky boy next do ...more
Anna
Mar 19, 2014 Anna rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-it-again
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Victoria
Mar 28, 2016 Victoria rated it really liked it
I really had fun with this novel. Regency era magic is fun for me, though the quantity of secondhand embarrassment was nearly enough to make me walk away, for the night. But I persevered, and after getting some great mood music (John Williams' Sabrina Theme, Schindler's List theme, Harry's Wondrous World, & Elegy for Cello & Orchestra) to wrap up the end few chapters, I was in high spirits. I'll continue the series as they follow the one sister's journey.

Intrigue at the Courts, Queen Vi
...more
Shannen
Jan 14, 2009 Shannen rated it it was ok
A book of gowns and magic. I found it a little difficult to get into, but all in all it was enjoyable. I did find the heroine's self-deprecating attitude a little tiresome with regards to her beloved Lochinvar's attentions ("oh certainly he can't love me as I love him, he must love my twin sister because she is so much better than me" type thing - ugh!). Mostly I found myself reading just to find out how it ended, not necessarily because I was enraptured by the tale. Despite its faults, it was a ...more
Camille Torres-kelly
Sep 26, 2012 Camille Torres-kelly rated it it was amazing
This is a must read for those who like romance and magic. Twin sisters Persephone and Penelope Leland are secretly being tutored in sorcery by their governess, Miss Allardyce. Then, they find out that Miss Allardyce has been kidnapped for evil purposes. Persephone and Penelope search throughout all of London to find their beloved governess and look for clues to put a stop to the wicked deed. The book is suspenseful in very unexpected ways, and has an ending that was extremely surprising. I stron ...more
April
Nov 11, 2012 April rated it liked it
Bewitching Season by Marissa Doyle is a fun YA historical fiction of twins and magic set in pre-Victorian England. The twins, Persy and Pen are about to have their first season, which basically means they go to balls in pretty dresses and try to look for somebody to propose to them. The problem? Their governess who taught them how to use their magic gets kidnapped by this evil Irish dude.
Read the rest of my review here
Danya
Jun 30, 2015 Danya rated it did not like it
This book is dangerous. That sounds super melodramatic and ridiculous, but it's true-- the fact that it's dangerous is evidenced by all of the good reviews by young female readers on this site. One of the main characters is kidnapped at the beginning of the novel by a good looking man named Carrighar, almost murdered by that same man, and then marries him at the end of the story. Carrighar's excuse for almost murdering several people and allowing another evil man to take over the British governm ...more
Lauren Kunkel
Apr 22, 2014 Lauren Kunkel rated it it was amazing
Bewitching Season by Marissa Doyle is an amazing fictional book for people who like books about upper class people going to London for their 'Season' in the olden days. This book is written using third person limited omniscient point of view.
Bewitching Season is about two twin sisters, Penelope (Pen) and Persephone (Percy), who are turning eighteen and are excited about going to London and wearing fancy new dresses and meeting new people; well at least Pen is excited. Percy is not very good at
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Shauna
Aug 11, 2012 Shauna rated it liked it
This is another Recency romance with witchcraft, but geared to a slightly younger audience, and basically it is just not as good as others I have read. I enjoyed the idea of the magic twins (Pen and Percy) and their fascination with the young Victoria, and the book held my interest overall. The romance was a bit belabored (in the seemingly inevitable misunderstandings), but everything works out, of course, and reading this quick book was not a bad way to spend a summer evening.
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Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 2 Feb 15, 2015 09:30AM  
What's The Name o...: YA novel about witches and magic! [s] 4 52 Dec 28, 2014 01:38PM  
  • The Season
  • The Pale Assassin (Pimpernelles, #1)
  • Aurelia (Aurelia, #1)
  • The Other Countess (The Lacey Chronicles, #1)
  • To Catch a Pirate
  • A Sweet Disorder
  • The Education of Bet
  • The Reluctant Heiress
  • The Grand Tour (Cecilia and Kate, #2)
  • The Queen's Daughter
  • The Body at the Tower (The Agency, #2)
  • The Amaranth Enchantment
  • Wildwing
  • Sovay
  • The Musician's Daughter
  • Dark Mirror (Dark Mirror, #1)
  • Wrapped (Wrapped, #1)
  • Cate of the Lost Colony
1015012
I try to write to stories I most enjoy reading...which means stories with heroines finding out who they are, their strengths and purposes, and where they belong in the world...and usually saving the day in the process (no damsels in distress here!) It means romance, but not with a capital "R". It means a lighter tone because I write what I like to read and I'm not really into cathartic reading...s ...more
More about Marissa Doyle...

Other Books in the Series

Leland Sisters (3 books)
  • Betraying Season (Leland Sisters, #2)
  • Courtship and Curses (Leland Sisters, #3)

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“Charles stepped forward, looking outraged. 'Him?' he cried. 'But I clobbered him! You can't marry him, Ally.” 13 likes
“He's a boy. They don't learn sense until they're thirty. If then.” 10 likes
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