The League of Gentlewomen Witches by India Holton was such a fun, magical, fantastical ride. It is book two in the Dangerous Damsels series, but can be read as a standalone. I actually have the first book, but read this one first because I am doing Halloween reads and this one had “witches” in the title. I had no problem following along even though it is interconnected with the first book. While reading this one I knew who the first book (which couple) was about. In short, you can read this out of order if you wish to.
The League of Gentlewomen Witches follows Charlotte Pettifer, a witch (if such things existed), and Alex O’Riley, a pirate (if such things existed). But, pirates in this world aren’t the kind of pirates you’re thinking of wish eye patches and sailing on ships. These pirates fly in houses! The witches are part of The Wicken League and they do little bits of magic to tidy, correct, and manipulate things, but they try to stay inconspicuous and “proper” even though they steal things all the time and break the law every day. They are sworn enemies with the pirates, The Wisteria Society. Really, the pirates and witches are basically the same though don’t let them hear you say that. The pirates are more brash and loud with their stealing and law-breaking whereas the witches are sort of boring.
Charlotte has been prophesied to be the next leader of The Wicken League. When a local museum is displaying the long-lost amulet of Black Beryl, both the witches and pirates want it. Charlotte and Alex start fighting for it, but then it is scooped up and stolen by Lady Armitage. Now the two enemies must work together to fight against LAdy Armitage and retrieve the amulet. This is not a slow burn which I guess you would expect in a Victorian era fiction, but they get together (even though they pretend it’s just for “exercise” purposes and to relieve the animosity between them) fairly quickly. It’s definitely a fun read!
The book is so whimsical and funny and surprisingly spicy! Nothing too crazy or descriptive, but definitely steamier than I had anticipated for this book – no complaints here though!
An example of the kind of ridiculous humor in the book – in this scene two female pirates are fighting and one says “Prepare to be wounded!’ she shouted in amendment. “But not so badly that you cannot sing at my soiree next week! The Prince will be there, and you know how he admires your voice!”
I highly recommend this book for a bit of fun fall reading!
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