In the Company of Witches
reviewed by Cara DiCostanzo
“Eye of newt, and toe of frog, Wool of bat, and tongue of dog, Adder’s fork, and blind-worm’s sting, Lizard’s leg, and owlet’s wing,—
For a charm of powerful trouble, Like a hell-broth boil and bubble. Double, double toil and trouble; Fire burn, and caldron bubble.”
― William Shakespeare
A family of witches living in New England during the time of Halloween? What could be a better setting for a cozy mystery about three witches accused of murder? The Warrens are a family that has lived in Evenfall for 400 years. Brynn Warren, along with her aunts Izzy and Nora (and Uncle Gideon, who never leaves the attic, runs a bed-and-breakfast out of their beautiful Queen Anne Victorian.
Constance Graves is known to be challenging, along with other adjectives that are not flattering. When she renovates her home, her choice is Ivy Hollow to stay, much to the dismay of the three witches. Constance even pays for every room at the bed-and-breakfast so anyone else staying there can ’t bother her. Headstrong red-headed Nora unfortunately jokes that they should bump Constance off before someone actually murders her. The town immediately becomes suspicious of Nora and Brynn takes it upon herself to absolve Nora of any wrongdoing.
Brynn, the youngest witch, has lost her powers to talk to the dead, ever since her beloved husband, Adam, died. If she could just talk to Constance through her magic, they could solve this mystery. Sadly, she believes her magic is gone. In order to prove Nora is innocent, she will need the help of her friends, neighbors and even her cat, Faustus, and her crow, Dog.
While I am not normally a reader of cozy mysteries, I genuinely adored In the Company of Witches by Auralee Wallace. I did think the mystery became a bit hard to follow at times. There were lots of curves and bends in the Wallace family, and many nefarious characters. It kept the reader guessing until the very end. The magic throughout the book was fun, and it was exciting to see the spells being played out. There is humor sprinkled everywhere, and I found myself laughing out loud at several parts. There is so much happening till the end of the story to keep you guessing. The bond between Izzy, Nora and Brynn was amazing and their banter was always humorous. This is the perfect Halloween book to read when the weather gets cold and the days get shorter.