Book Review: “The Very Secret Society Of Irregular Witches” by Sangu Mandanna

Cover of "The Very Secret Society Of Irregular Witches" by Sangu Mandanna
Cover of “The Very Secret Society Of Irregular Witches” by Sangu Mandanna.

I’m back with another book review, and this time I’m reviewing “The Very Secret Society Of Irregular Witches” by Sangu Mandanna!

Here’s a quick summary so we know what it’s about:

“As one of the few witches in Britain, Mika Moon knows she has to hide her magic, keep her head down, and stay away from other witches so their powers don’t mingle and draw attention. And as an orphan who lost her parents at a young age and was raised by strangers, she’s used to being alone and she follows the rules…with one exception: an online account, where she posts videos “pretending” to be a witch. She thinks no one will take it seriously.

But someone does. An unexpected message arrives, begging her to travel to the remote and mysterious Nowhere House to teach three young witches how to control their magic. It breaks all of the rules, but Mika goes anyway, and is immediately tangled up in the lives and secrets of not only her three charges, but also an absent archaeologist, a retired actor, two long-suffering caretakers, and…Jamie. The handsome and prickly librarian of Nowhere House would do anything to protect the children, and as far as he’s concerned, a stranger like Mika is a threat. An irritatingly appealing threat.
As Mika begins to find her place at Nowhere House, the thought of belonging somewhere begins to feel like a real possibility. But magic isn’t the only danger in the world, and when a threat comes knocking at their door, Mika will need to decide whether to risk everything to protect a found family she didn’t know she was looking for….”

Plot Development: 5 out of 5 stars

If you’ve read “The House In The Cerulean Sea” by TJ Klune, this book has similarities in terms of a bit of found family, hidden secrets coming to light, and some overall cozy vibes. The main difference is that there aren’t any supernatural beings the book specifically focuses on except for witches. This heavily plays into the worldbuilding and the rest of the book. Mika Moon, the heroine, is an actual witch who tries pretending to be a ‘fake’ witch online. However, minor chaos ensues when a family requests her to mentor their three adopted daughters who are also, coincidentally, witches.
The overall story’s pacing felt just right. I didn’t have any complaints about it. I also enjoyed the few plot twists that were revealed later in the book. I wish I could discuss more about this book’s story. However, I risk giving away quite a few major spoilers if I do.

Character Development: 4.5  out of 5 stars

Mika and Jamie were fun to read, and same with the three kids Mika was involved in mentoring. I also enjoyed reading Ken and Ian, especially Ian’s attempted matchmaking of Mika and Jamie. I also enjoyed reading how all the kids warmed up to Mika over time. It was equally fun to see how curious they were about their powers and the world around them.
I didn’t pay much attention to Mika and Jamie’s romantic arc, as I’m a reader that doesn’t focus much on romance unless it’s supposed to drive the main plot. However, it was fun to read them bonding and getting to know each other more. It was also good to see them working out things whenever they hit problems (whether because of their miscommunication or other plot-relevant reasons).

Worldbuilding Development: 5 out of 5 stars

The worldbuilding for the book made sense overall. I don’t have too much to say about it due to concerns over revealing spoilers. However, I do think that it’s interesting to think of all witches trying to live in secret. Mika playing with those boundaries of secrecy vs. public practice is fun to read. It helped add to the tension of the overall story and the situation the characters are in.

Overall, I’m rating this book 4.5 out of 5 stars!

This was a fun book to read overall. If you enjoyed reading books like “The House In The Cerulean Sea,” this book might be for you!

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