Review – Hexed by Julia Tuffs
Digital Review Copy Details.
- Title: Hexed: Don’t Get Mad, Get Powers.
- Author: Julia Tuffs
- Genre: Young Adult, Magic, Witches
- Source: NetGalley
- Publication Date: 8 July 2021
- Format: ebook
- Pages: 400
The set up
Jessie is right in the middle of her teenage years, has moved too many times to have any friends and is finding fitting into this new school harder than expected. This could be because there’s a sexist ringleader who has her in his sights or it could be the fact that she just found out she’s a witch with witchy powers (not just one, but a whole range).
Like any coming of age story set around a secondary (high) school, we get the cliques: mean girls, jocks, nerds, etc. and it’s an interesting change to see that dynamic in an English setting. So to the mix we have obnoxious teens (majority), unpopular girls ( minority), indifferent faculty and various incidents in and out of school.
Same old, same old
It’s a fairly topical book, which covers #metoo issues around consent, institutional bias, pervasive sexism and the added bonus of being able to deal with these issues with the power of witchcraft. Despite the seriousness of the themes, you are not brow beaten by them. In fact the way they are introduced and dealt with make you realise how common these incidents are. Worse yet, their frequency make you lose sight of their import.
We see Jessie make choices that we might not necessarily agree with ( I know I didn’t) however it was true to her backstory, which is key for authenticity and believability in fiction. I didn’t agree with her on occasion, often didn’t like her decision making but Hexed worked for me nevertheless, because of this authenticity.
I liked it for the family dynamic- who doesn’t love three generations of witches living together, references to Buffy, Charmed and Sabrina and characters who came straight out of local English school. And I can’t finish this review without mentioning the magic. Most of it was cool and made you totally wish you had that ability as a teen in a difficult situation. Plus we were told about cause and effect. There is a cost to using magic and consequences, so it’s not all fun times.
Thank you for the realistic portrayal of teenagers and also the realities of life. Repercussions were true rather than wish fulfilment.
My thanks to NetGalley, the author and publisher for a digital copy of this book in return for a candid review.
3 Stars - Liked It