Book Review: This Coven Won't Break by Isabel Sterling

PopSugar 2020 Reading Challenge Prompt: A book with at least a four-star rating on Goodreads Other PS 2020 reading prompts this wo...

PopSugar 2020 Reading Challenge Prompt: A book with at least a four-star rating on Goodreads

Other PS 2020 reading prompts this would satisfy: A book that's published in 2020, A book about or involving social media

TW: Violence, death, abduction, stalking, bigotry

I've been waiting for the release of This Coven Won't Break since I finished These Witches Don't Burn back last summer.  I really enjoyed the first book in the series and found a strong connection to the characters, so I was excited to see the continuance of the story and to follow up with Hannah after such a traumatic ending to book one.

After Hannah's near-death experience due to witch hunters, she's lost most of her magic and is only able to feel her elements when her girlfriend, Morgan (a blood witch), is around. But the hunters are still around, and they're worse than ever. They've developed a drug that will get rid of a witch's magic, and it's up to Hannah and her clan to save magic.

I really like the books in this series because the representation of so many queer characters, both witches and nonmagical. In the first book, I really liked the development of the characters and getting to know each of them, however I was disappointed by the lack of POC characters. In book two, This Coven Won't Break, there are a couple of POC characters, but they weren't main characters. So again, I would like to see more representation in terms of race and ethnicity. Coven is different than Witches, because instead of the story focusing on developing each of the characters, it moreso focuses on action and adventure. We know the characters at this point, and while we're introduced to a few new characters, there's a lot more story driving this plot, as opposed to a more character-driven plot like Witches.

I was so immersed in the story, and unlike the first book, this book hit the ground running. There were things happening from the get-go, and I needed to know what was going to happen next - the entire magical community depended on what happened next! And the ending was such a complete shock. I absolutely didn't see it coming.

"Salem High isn't a place to discover who you are. It's a place to survive and move on. A place where the swing from celebrity to outcast is only one misstep away. Especially for a girl like me." - This Coven Won't Break, Isabel Sterling

I love this series and I love the characters. I know some books within series can work as standalones, but these are not those kinds of books. You absolutely need to read Witches before Coven, or you'll be missing critical information that's very necessary to be invested in the book and to understand what's happening. Coven does mention some background information, but it doesn't have quite the effect that reading book one has. I definitely recommend these books, and if "queer witch YA" doesn't grasp your attention, then this book probably isn't for you anyways.

Goodreads rating: ★★★★☆

*Thanks so much to the publisher for the review copy via Netgalley. All opinions are my own.

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