Salt & Storm
By Kendall Kulper
Published 2014 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
The only thing Avery wants is to claim her rightful place, her destiny - the Roe witch. Unfortunately, her mother is doing everything in her power to stop it. But when Avery has a dream about her own murder, she becomes desperate to awaken her powers. Desperate enough to agree to help Tane, a tattooed stranger with power of his own. Will he be Avery's salvation or her downfall?
Witches - I know, they're a little old school, but I like a good witch story. I was drawn to the premise of this one - a girl being denied her birthright - as well as the simple yet eye-catching cover (I know, very superficial of me, but sometimes it's true!). Sadly, this book didn't quite live up to my hopes for it.
While I did sympathize with Avery and her anger at her mother for denying her, it was also pretty clear to me that the whole situation was much more complicated than Avery was able to see. This made it difficult for me to be completely on Avery's side against her mother - I believed that her mother knew things she didn't about the magic and really was trying to protect her daughter (though, obviously not in the healthiest way). Additionally, I found most of the plot pretty predictable and unexciting. For a story about witches, it seemed a little less than thrilling. I also found the romance pretty problematic - well, Tane's whole character actually was problematic for me. I suppose I should have expected that this story would mostly devolve into a romance, but I didn't, and I found that a pretty disappointing turn of events.
Overall, I thought the book was relatively well-written. Kulper does a nice job with the setting and, when she bothers, I was interested in hearing the history of the Roe women. Unfortunately, she focused more on the romance, losing my interest in the story.
Thanks to the publisher for a digital advance reader's copy, provided via Edelweiss.