The Witches of Cambridge
Amandine Bisset has always had the power to feel the emotions of those around her. It’s a secret she can share only with her friends – all professors, all witches – when they gather for meetings on the college rooftops. Although lately she senses the ties among her colleagues beginning to unravel. If only she had her student Noa’s power to hear the innermost thoughts of ot...more
I would recommend this book to fans of Sarah Addison Allen, it reminded me of her books.
The only thing missing was the recipe for those pistachio cream croissants!
Thank you good reads for a free copy of this book.
This is my third book by Menna Van Praag and I can honestly say that I 100 percent doubt that I will read any of her books in the future. As much as I loved The Dress Shop of Dreams, I disliked The Witches of Cambridge. I kept wondering if I had made a mistake and she really didn't write this book, but nope, same author wrote both books.
If you want to read a book with an ever shi ...more
Van Praag’s novels are always full of whimsical magic, romance, and interesting women characters.
In her other novels, van Praag’s use of magic is always kind of subtle which to me is kind of her ‘trademark’….so I was interested to see if she incorporated magic more boldly in a novel so clearly about witches. While the magical realism elements were mor ...more
I wasn't sure what to expect with "witches" in the title and knowing Menna van Praag used magic in her other books. I really like the use of subtle magic in books for everyday life, if written well. If not, it doesn't feel right, too forced or something. Witches in books can be good or not so good depending on the writing etc. It was absolutely written well in Witches of Cambridge! I was hooked and in love within the first few ...more
This story is about love in so many different forms. Friends, children, spouses and lovers.
It's an interesting set up with a group of witches who all have different abilities, and the story follows their various trials and tribulations as they face all that life can throw at them - from trust issues, desire to have children, love and loss - and the decisions they make as to whether to use magic to help themselves along the way.
For some reason, I just felt ...more
I actually didn't dislike the book. I thought the characters were great and their powers were intriguing. For me there was too much going on. There were so many subplots the whole book felt too wishy washy. I would lose track of what was happening to each character and I wanted to read more about each one. ...more
The Witches of Cambridge is a light weight book about women with special powers. There were too many characters and too many story lines. I found Heloise's story to be interesting and realistic. Amandine's story of her husband's secret appeared to be resolved too quickly. All the other stories and characters, especially the one about Noa and Santiago were underdeveloped, swiftly resolved and appeared to me to be fillers.
Overall this book was a fast read but not memorable.
“Gazing at the jumble of colours and words, she runs her finger along some of the spines and feels herself starting to breathe more easily. What is it, Héloïse wonders, about the comfort of books? Just by touching the printed words she already feels sparks of excited curiosity begin to wake up her brain.”
I usually prefer to start writing the review as soon as I finish the book. I give myself some time, of course, time that is mostly spent staring at the back cover in awe. How did this happen? ...more
As soon as I read this description I wondered if a book more perfectly suited to me could be written. I love magic realism, witches, and food. Spells + baking = a happy, relaxing read for me. The Witches of Cambridge combined all three loves deliciously. ...more
I was so excited to read this book. I kept putting it off, because then I'd be out of Menna's books again. She hooked me with The Dress Shop of Dreams.
It was really so good. There really are witches, so the magic isn't quite as subtle in this one. All the witches know they are witches. They are the Witches of Cambridge because they meet once a month and are either professors or students of one of the colleges. I loved how quickly they came together to support one another ...more
I have lost a spouse and a child so I understand the deep, profound long term grief that Heloise experienced and I know how ea ...more
I read The Dress Shop of Dreams by the same author, and I enjoyed the book, so I had high hopes for this book. I just read over my review of that book and I realize that I have many of the same opinions about both books. I guess the author's writing and my opinions are consistent.
At first, I didn't think I was enjoying the book. I didn't see any ...more
It’s difficult to pinpoint why I couldn’t get lost in the story and had no issue with setting it aside for moments at a time because it really ...more
Amandine Bisset does not share this secret with everyone of course. She attends the meetings of the Cambridge University Society of Literature and Witchcraft, and I admit, that would be a meeting I'd love to attend also! There, everyone knows her secret, as she is surrounded by collegues (professors) who are all witches.
It is at these meetings that Amandine realizes the emotions s ...more
“I know,” Cosima says , softly. “But life isn’t like a perfectly balanced equation, Kat. It’s messy and muddled and you ju ...more
Cambridge, England – Present Day
There are six witches in Cambridge and each has his or her own unique magic. Several of them meet in a turret at one of the colleges to discuss books. But changes are coming, and each has to face reality sooner or later.
Amandine wishes that her magical power could explain why her husband has suddenly become distant to her and their twin sons. She suspects he’s having an affair, although Amandine struggles to actually belie ...more
Look, MvP can write. There is something flitting through the sentences. The characters are very human. The emotions are there.
But I didn't like this. It took me longer than it should have to figure out why. When I finally did, it was blindingly obvious:
1. There are serious consent issues that were never addressed (in one case they were, but not in another, because ...more
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George's eyes widen as he takes it. "Looks delicious." He gobbles it down in one gulp. "Incredible."
Cosima laughs. "You barely tasted it."
"I have highly sophisticated taste buds," George explains. "They only need a passing lick of something in order to fully appreciate the delicate subtleties of its flavors."
"Oh, really?" Cosima smiles. "Okay then, try this and tell me what's in it." She hands him a slice of wild mushroom and grape tomato bruschetta. "Every single ingredient."
"All right then," George says, as he begins to chew. "You're on." He swallows. "Okay, in addition to the obvious: basil, garlic, olive oil, black pepper, salt... a splash of lemon juice and a dash of rosemary."
Cosima studies him with a raised eyebrow and a curious smile. "That's very impressive. Anything else?"
"Nope." George shakes his head. "That's what my extremely sophisticated taste buds are telling me.”