New Book Review: The Rules of Magic


Rated 4 of 5 stars

(I hate this book cover…had this not been a book club read I would have never chosen this on a shelf. The first edition is sooooo much better, albeit boring too)

This was my first Alice Hoffman story and I am not disappointed in the least! The writing and pacing was fluid throughout the story and it had a character-based approach to the story. You find yourself falling in love with the characters (slight pun here). The story follows a group of Owens siblings as they learn of their magical powers as witches and also of the curse that has burdened their family for many years. The curse of the Owens family is that anyone they love is doomed to death. Therefore, love is forbidden and these three siblings, Franny, Jet and Vincent, must find ways to live life without ever falling in love lest it be their own downfall.

Throughout the story, you see the growth of each character and in that growth you see them all tempt fate with attempting to love someone deeply. You’ll follow their downfall with trepidation because of it. While this story is a dark look at love, there are bright spots that show that life isn’t worth living if you’re not loving. The moral to the story is very succinct and relevant. Hoffman does a great job of masterfully weaving characters fate together without a hint to the readers as to what big event will happen next.

The story lulls in some points though. While the writing is superb and fits the timeframe of the story perfectly, there are moments that are filled with too much history and ambiance and “other” things. You’ll have a great visual of the home(s) and their cities and towns. But you will also get a heaping dose of history throughout the story which at face value is an added bonus but by midway through can be a bit challenging when coupled with the other visuals… you’ll just want to know what will happen next at that point. Maybe this is a good idea now that I think about it…maybe Hoffman wanted to build that rising angst in us? No matter, the story was wholly enjoyable and character-driven which to me are the most memorable.

Raging Book Reviews Recommended

*Book purchased with my own money for review. Buy it HERE

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