May 11, 2015

Review: A Magic Dark and Bright by Jenny Adams Perinovic

TitleA Magic Dark and Bright
Author: Jenny Adams Perinovic
Publisher: Bookish Girl Press
Publishing Date: April 28, 2015
Pages/Format: 321, eARC
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She meant to help a ghost...not unleash a curse.

Amelia Dupree hasn’t seen the Woman in White since the night her brother died. 

The ghost seems to have disappeared from the woods surrounding Asylum, Pennsylvania—that is, until Charlie Blue moves into the creepy old MacAllister House next door. Amelia can’t help liking him, even though she spent her childhood thinking his grandmother was a witch. And she definitely can’t ignore the connection between his arrival and the Woman in White’s return. 

Then Amelia learns that the Woman in White is a prisoner, trapped between the worlds of the living and the dead. Devastated by the idea that her brother could be suffering a similar fate, Amelia decides to do whatever it takes to help the Woman in White find peace--and Charlie agrees to help her.

But when Amelia’s classmates start to drown in the Susquehanna River, one right after another, rumors swirl as people begin to connect the timing of Charlie’s arrival with the unexplained deaths. As Charlie and Amelia uncover the dark history of Asylum, they realize they may have unleashed an unspeakable evil. One they have to stop before everything they love is destroyed.

Book in One Word: asdflskjGOOD

It's always so nice when a book is better than you thought it would be. That's not to say I didn't think A Magic Dark and Bright--which I first stumbled upon when its pretty cover caught my eye--wouldn't be good. But I had such fun reading it and it was a total blast. This is a book that certainly has some issues, but you enjoy reading it so much that you just don't give a damn. Reading this just felt so good, and therefore, this book is good.

There's a woman in white living in the woods, and Amelia Dupree has seen her. Though she hasn't seen the Woman in White since her brother's fatal accident, Amelia knows she's still there, and in her fear, grief, and paranoia, she's drifted from her friends and drawn into herself, and had trouble sleeping. One night, Amelia's sure she sees something in the woods, and that same night, a young man shows up at the MacAllister house (which is of course inhabited by a witch-like old lady people stay far away from). The boy is Charlie MacAllister, Mrs. MacAllister's grandson, and he seems to be quite interesting...and he doesn't think Amelia is crazy. As for the goings on in Asylum, Pennsylvania...well, that's a different story. Especially since people refuse to talk about a person from the past, and girls are being found dead in the river, which is something that's happened in Asylum before.

I liked this book. I really, really did. The story centers around Amelia and is told in her POV, with a few dreams that show us bits of someone's past. There's a mystery or two underlying the whole thing, and you don't really know how it's going to end. (Spoiler alert: You're going to want the sequel really, really bad. I want the sequel really, really bad.) Amelia was a nice POV to be in and a good character, and it was nice to see her work to move on from the shadow of grief she was hiding under. Though she makes some not-exactly-wise decisions--there are certain things you just don't do alone or do in general, Amelia--when it comes to the relationship between her and her best friend, Amelia's the semi-sweet sugar (girl can be tough) and Leah's the very sassy spice. I thought that Leah was a good friend and a good character, and I liked how she was always there for Leah. (But I think her choice in men is a little shady.) I liked Grandma MacAllister and Mama Dupree. Ransom was interesting though I kept side-eyeing him, and Ben, though a freaking douche, created some nice and tense scenes. And there's Charlie, sweet, adorable, glasses-wearing, funny Charlie MacAllister. I wanted him in every single scene, and heck yes, I shipped it. I loved when he would just act like a friend--though they both obviously wanted more--because his friendliness was so nice and adorable. And though the romance could be considered instalove, don't let that turn you away, because I'd say it's purposeful (and that's all I can say). But really, it doesn't matter either way, because the romance is adorable and I shipped it.

A Magic Dark and Bright gets its lightness--or brightness--from Amelia's romance and friendships. But a lot of Amelia & Co.'s escapades have to do with solving the mystery(ies) surrounding Asylum. Who's the Woman in White and what does she want? Who's Amelia dreaming about and why is she dreaming about her? Why are girls suddenly "committing suicide" in the river? What the hell is going on in Asylum? There are some interesting twists, and the ending is so just whaaa that, seriously, why don't I already have the nameless sequel in my hands? And while the darkness--dark meaning horror and creepiness and all that--wasn't heavy, it was still there, and it added a nice little compelling element to the story. Mystery! Murder! Magic! And it all happens in a small town called Asylum, so, you know, shit is sure to go down.

If you're looking for a page turner filled with a fun cast of characters, an adorable romance, creepy ghosts, and small-town mystery--and even if you're not--then huzzah, may I please steer you toward A Magic Dark and Bright. It's always a pleasure and a wonderful thing when you read a book and get such joy and entertainment from reading it; in short, reading this book is a pure blast. And you know a book is good when, upon finishing it, you slouch on your couch--or into it like a dead fish, really--and moan "WHYYY" over and over again because WHYYY did it end that way and WHYYY can't you read the sequel already and WHYYY WHYYY WHYYY. To wrap things up: I'm a big fan of this book. So you should read it.

Did I like it? YES!
Did I love it? Not quite.
Would I reread it? Yes!
Would I purchase it? Absolutely.
Who would I recommend it to? If you like a novel that's just pure enjoyment to read--and if you like tales with some magic and ghosts and mystery--then this is for you.

I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review, and that in no way sways my opinion of the book.


  1. You had me at asdfldkjGOOD :) I hadn't really heard of this before it came out, but it looks cool. I like books with ghosts and mystery but I don't read enough of them. And I didn't realize this was a series!! I kind of want to start a new series since I finished a lot of them in the past year and have nothing to look forward to.

  2. I agree, this book is soo good! That freaking ending. I would have thrown the book across the room if it wasn't on my Kindle. XD

  3. The cover is very pretty, it sounds like you really did enjoy this novel - I haven't seen that many reviews about it, but I do want to give it a try - thank you for the helpful review <3 Benish | Feminist Reflections


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