Review 226. Ruth Warburton – Witch finder.

18039069Title: Witch finder.
Author: Ruth Warburton.
Publication date: January 2nd 2014 by Hodder Children's Books.
Sort: Part one of ‘Witch finder’
Source: Netgalley & Publisher.

London. 1880. In the slums of Spitalfields apprentice blacksmith Luke is facing initiation into the Malleus Maleficorum, the fearsome brotherhood dedicated to hunting and killing witches. Luke’s final test is to pick a name at random from the Book of Witches, a name he must track down and kill within a month, or face death himself. Luke knows that tonight will change his life forever. But when he picks out sixteen-year-old Rosa Greenwood, Luke has no idea that his task will be harder than he could ever imagine.

Rating:
"He would go back and he would kill the witch. Because there was no way out of this, save one: death. Hers.. or his."

This is another example of a good promise gone wrong. This book had everything: it promises witches and magic! And look at the pretty cover! Well, you are wrong. I am disappointed and frankly, deceived by the blurb.

The first thing where everything goes wrong is the fact that I couldn’t connect with the characters. On one side we have Luke, who is facing his final test before he can enter the Malleus Maleficorum brotherhood. He wants to take revenge on the witch who killed his mother and father. His task is to kill Rosa Greenwood, the girl he picked from the Book of Witches. Rosa is terrorized by her family. Her brother is an asshole, her mother is a greedy bitch and her ‘love-interest’ is an even bigger ass. Sorry, but I had to get that out of my system. This didn’t make the book any more enjoyable. It has been a while since I've hated a character as much as I hated Sebastian. Warning: If you don't like animal cruelty, you better stay away. He beats a puppy to death without any reason.

Rosa is forced to marry Sebastian, because they are in need of money and he comes from a rich family. The fact that Rosa endures everything without complaining or using her magic shows that she has no backbone at all. I just couldn’t feel sorry for her and I wanted her to be brave and stand-up for herself. Instead, she backs away to revel in self pity. There are countless of times I wished that Luke just stabbed her, but of course he starts to doubt his motives. When Rosa finally is in a state of dying, he rescues her and seals his fate.


Another thing is the lack of chemistry. These characters have nothing in common and there is zero spark between them. They could have been brother and sister for all that matters. The whole romance slams into your face with only one purpose: to have romance. I kept asking myself: WHERE IS THE MAGIC? WHERE ARE THE WITCHES? And all I got was a mess with a predictable plot. I’m happy that the ending is fairly conclusive, because now I don’t have to read the sequel.

52 comments

  1. Aww men, this plot sounds like a total cliche! And a spineless heroine? Not touching this one. Sorry to hear that the book was a disappointment, Mel!

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    1. Yes, the spineless MC was the most disappointing part :(

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  2. I felt the exact same throughout most of this book. The only thing I actually enjoyed about it was the ending, so I'll probably pick up book 2 eventually.
    I really wanted Rosa to stick up for herself as well, and she waited until the very end to do it which was a complete disappointment.
    Great review, Mel! :)

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    1. I enjoyed the ending, because it was finally over, haha.

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  3. The love interest beats a puppy to death for no reason? I'm appalled by this. I really really hate animal cruelty and to think a supposed love interest is doing this. Ugh. I will now NEVER read this book. Aside from the animal cruelty, it doesn't seem like I would enjoy it anyway with the spineless heroine and the predictable plot. And misleading blurbs are the worst.

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    1. Yeah, the animal cruelty wasn't really my thing here :s

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  4. I look forward to this book! I didn't have time to read it for pub date but I'll get on it soon nevertheless. I hope I like it better but forced love is something I really hate.
    Too bad it disappointed you. Deceptive blurbs are the worst!!! :(

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    1. Eh, I don't know this novel and frankly I'm not even considering. Sounds like the story is a big miss. *shrugs*

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  6. Too bad this was a disapointment it sounded really good!

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  7. I'm currently reading it right now so I cannot read your review but judging from your rating...you didn't enjoy it too, did you? I feel literally NOTHING towards Rosa or Luke or ANYTHING actually...it's really boring and I'm tempted to DNF it >< For heaven's sake I'm on page 150-ish and nothing significant has happened.

    I'm sorry if I'm ranting in my comment haha xD but seriously this book ughh

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    1. Nope, I did not enjoy it at all. And based on your tweets, I don't think you did either, haha.

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  8. I seriously haven't hated a character this much for a while either. Sebastian needs to die a horrible gruesome death.
    And YES, the romance was just non-existant and then POOF it was there and WTF??
    Ugh.
    This book was just not a good read.

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    1. Perhaps someone needs to beat him to death!

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  9. This makes me sad. I was really looking forward to this one. Her other series had something similar with the romance. I might have to buck it up and try it any ways.

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  10. I can't believe you actually finished this book! Usually, when I fail to connect with the characters, and when the book starts to become too annoying and disappointing, I just throw it away and grab a better read. Of course, I do feel a bit guilty for not being able to review it... but there are so many other books out there! Actually, I've been thinking of writing DNF-reviews. Just a paragraph or two to explain why I couldn't read the book.

    Oana @All Fantasy Worlds

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    1. I know right? Very proud I managed to read it all.

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  11. Nooooooo! I was SO excited for this too!!! Damn, well awesome review hun, I think I'm still gonna give this a shot, but not sure how it will go, characters I can't connect with is one of the worst things in a book ):

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    1. Yes, such a shame :( But I hope you'll like it!

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  12. That is one of my biggest pet peeves in books. I get so annoyed when romance is just thrown just for the sake of having romance. It feels so useless and really messes up the plot.
    Great review and sorry you didn't like this one. It just sucks when a book has a wonderful summary and then it doesn't deliver :(.

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    1. Yes, you expect so much and you get nothing..

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  13. The fact that you couldn't connect with the characters sucks... Great review!!

    Katering @ Owl Always Be Reading

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  14. Aw. I'm sorry that you didn't enjoy this one. Sounds interesting, but not for me :) It always sucks when you can't connect with the characters. Better luck with the next book you read. <3 Happy reading Mel :)

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  15. Aw, too bad it wasn't a big hit :-( You need to be able to relate to the characters!

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  16. Ah damn!! I hate when this happen, because I mean look at that cover and the blurb! I'd give my firstborn to read it or something (I must be careful with these though) but it's such a shame to hear that. First of the book without chemistry is no book at all to me. If I cannot feel it I don't see a point of reading it. Sorry this one disappointed your Mel. Great review! :) You saved my firstborn this time :)

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  17. Ahhh no this read >< I've seen reviews around for this one, and everyone basically thinks the same, Mel! :O (so I think it's a safe bet to avoid this one) Not being able to connect with characters is always such a suckerpunch... D:
    Sorry you didn't enjoy this one, Mel!! Hopefully something better comes your way! <33

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    1. Finally a book where I'm not an outsider then :p

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  18. This sounds like a disturbing read. One of the kinds of heroines I hate is that weak girl who wallows in self-pity. God, life is 10% of what happens to you and 90% of that is how you react to it, and crying to yourself isn't going to do you any big favors. And animal cruelty for no reason at all is detestable. This could have caught my interest (the cover is lovely), but now that I know what's inside... no freaking thank you! Awesome review!

    Faye @ The Social Potato

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  19. OK, so I am totally on the other side of the fence with this one :) I really loved it. I didn't think the romance had no chemistry at all, tho I must say, I didn't care much for it either, I just loved the setting and the writing and the gut-wrenching moments (most of which involved that douche, Sebastian). I hate animal cruelty, but I must say Ruth did a good job portraying the cruel and emotionless Sebastian through those horrible scenes with animals. I liked the part about killing or being killed and thought that was pretty interesting, tho I must say, this is more of a fantasy/historical YA than typical paranormal YA about witches. A whole different vibe, and probably that's why so many are and will be disappointed by it. I did not particularly like the ending of the first book, but will be picking up the next one to see where the story will go! Sorry you didn't enjoy it, Mel! But thanks for your honest review :)

    Evie @Bookish

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    1. Thanks for sharing this Evie! I love to see the other side of the story. I'm happy you were able to enjoy this book :) I must say that I liked the setting as well and I agree that it made him look cruel, but meh. I hope you'll like the sequel too!

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  20. Aww this is definitely dissapointing! But sometimes it just happens even with an interesting cover.

    Happy Reading Mel!

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  21. I keep seeing reviews for this one that are rather negative, which is pretty disappointing because I really wanted to read it, but I don't think I will be able to pick this one up, especially with that puppy scene. That makes me sick to my stomach just thinking about it. Glad for the warning though, now I know I need to stay away. Thanks for the great honest review!

    Vyki @ On The Shelf

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  22. lol I loved that you got that out of your systems. Books like this can be really frustrating and I definitely understand why you would feel this way about it. Sorry this was a let down for you, but thanks for the honest opinion!

    Janina @ Synchronized Reading

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    1. Haha, yes, there was no other way to describe those characters.

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  23. I just hate it when blurbs and pretty covers are deceiving. Don't think I'll be able to stomach this one what with the lack of chemistry, asshole love interest and puppy-beating. What a disappointment. Sorry you had to endure that one! Great review though, Mel! :)

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  24. This one does not sound like a book for me. Thanks for the warning!

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  25. I felt the same way, Mel. The characters just bore me to death. Why didn't Rosa just used her magic and whipped that ass.... who slapped her? God, what a waste of being a witch.

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  26. Aw, this is so disappointing. I love witches and magic, and this looked so good! I'm sorry it was a disappointment.

    Wendy @ The Midnight Garden

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  27. Well, this is just not good. I was so mad at The Promise of Amazing because let's face it, it was the opposite of amazing for me. =/

    I didn't know anything about Witch Finder and I just read the blurb which is so good. It's like a trailer that shows all the good parts of the movie and to be honest, I've yet to read a good book with witches in it. I always find them disappointing me.

    Oh well, the thing about not having to read the sequel is actually good.

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    1. Perfect example, it's indeed like some trailers!

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  28. Thanks for the honest review Mel, I'm so glad I read your review because puppy bashing? I don't think I could handle that. I started reading this book but stopped quickly because the writing just wasn't drawing me in, looks like I made the right decision!

    Jeann @ Happy Indulgence

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  29. I never even heard of this book before and I've seen like 3 reviews of it just today! All three are different but I am definitely turned off after reading your review. I think we have pretty similar tastes in books and just reading the things that bothered you, I think they will bother me too. And in all likelihood I would probably throw the book across the room at the puppy part and not even finish. Thanks for sharing your honest opinion!

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    1. I agree, I think we are pretty similar and I don't recommend this book to you (or anyone for that matter) at all.

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