Welcome to my tour stop for The Witching Elm by C.N. Crawford. This is a YA dark fantasy and the review tour runs February 2nd-13th. Check out the tour page for more information.
on sale Feb. 5-11th for only .99 cents!
Seventeen-year-old sorcerer Toby Corvin has one desire: to get back to Maremount, a world of talking ravens, ancient spells, and sinister bone wardens. Not only to fight a tyrannical monster, but to reunite with his girlfriend.
There’s only one problem—he’s stuck in downtown Boston.
After a brutal civil war forced Toby into our world, he took refuge in Mather Academy, blending in with the students in the prestigious boarding school. Sheltering in its creaky old walls, he secretly plots to save his home.
But if anything can distract him from his mission, it’s his wild-haired and intriguing classmate Fiona. Of course, she has her own distractions with Jack: rich, mysterious, and annoyingly attractive.
When a ghostly army from Maremount descends upon Boston, Toby and Fiona must work together, racing desperately to stop the slaughter. In the process, they face unspeakable danger while unearthing dark secrets of New England’s past—a past that holds the key to saving both worlds from destruction.
***** Review *****
Toby is a young man from a parallel, older world. Even though Boston has changed quite a bit, some things are still the same. He takes up residence at Mather Academy and quite quickly integrates and makes friends. What surprised me was how quickly he revealed his story to Fiona and the bunch.
The bunch is quite a handful, and in the beginning I was confused about the characters because there seemed to be just a few too many and they all of a sudden band together almost immediately to go on what seems like a wild goose chase for an unknown poem about King Phillip. That part was a bit wild, but what happens near Mather Academy is even wilder and they need each other every bit to keep their world safe.
The beginning was a bit rough for me to get into with all of Toby’s story, and the backstory and history of his world…that starts colliding with current-day Boston. Everything revolves around the Salem witch hunt, with two very distinct groups of people from that time and Toby’s world of Maremont: the Ragmen (aka the good guys) and the Purgators.
The Blodrial cult is called the Purgators. They’re a cult of witch hunters. They started in ancient Rome. The witch-hunting Kings, James and Charles the First, were both members. The Purgators led the witch hunts in England.
I was thrown for quite a few loops throughout the book, and I can definitely say this is indeed a dark fantasy.
***** About the Author *****
C.N. Crawford is not one person but two. Christine (C) grew up in the historic town of Lexington, and has a lifelong interest in New England folklore – with a particular fondness for creepy old cemeteries. Nick (N) spent his childhood reading fantasy and science fiction further north during Vermont’s long winters.
Together they work to incorporate real historical events and figures into contemporary urban fantasy novels.