The Spellshop

Sarah Beth Durst. Pan Macmillan. (384p) ISBN: 9781035042326
The Spellshop
The Spellshop

I don’t know what I was expecting from this when I asked for it but gardening, cottage decoration and renovation, jam making, baking, magic, and romance was what I got. Oh and an enchanted sentient spider plant.

Cozy fantasy was a genre I didn’t realise I needed, but this book is like one big gentle hug with enough peril and romantic suspense to keep you interested in the story.

Keila, a librarian with a passionate love and respect for books, and a sentient spider plant assistant called Caz who escape from the Imperial Library during a revolution make their way back to Keila’s home island.

So far so fantasy, but on the island they find her parent’s old cottage in good enough condition to start making it a place to live and hide the spell books they rescued (or if being unkind, stole). A lot of the book is taken up with making this cottage a home, and there are lots of descriptions of homey spaces which is just so comfortable to read.

They meet so many kind people on the island, especially Larran… We watch as relationships flourish around common grounds of cinnamon buns and raspberry jam.

There was some peril but these were perils that gave a reason for people to work together to show that kindness begets kindness and that it is rare for people to be downright ornery.

The main peril is that Keila decides to use magic from the spell books to help the island and islanders who have fallen on hard times, but this is a crime against Imperial law, but does the Empire still exist, does the law still exist, after all there has been a revolution!

I really liked this take on storytelling and it has given us a great world that we could return to again and again as it is set in an ‘Empire’ of islands.

Oh and there are flying cats!

I received this book from NetGalley and Pan Macmillan in exchange for an honest review.

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