It takes a witch by Heather Blake

(A Wishcraft Mystery, #1)

Darcy Merriweather and her sister, Harper, hail from a long line of witches who have the power to grant wishes using spells. They've come to Enchanted Village in Salem, Massachusetts, to join the family business, but they soon find themselves knee deep in murder...

Until three weeks ago, Darcy and Harper were working dead-end jobs and trying to put their troubles behind them. Then their aunt Velma delivered a bombshell: They're actually Wishcrafters - witches with the power to grant wishes with a mere spell. Wanting a fresh start, they head to their aunt's magic-themed tourist town to master their newfound skills.

But their magic fails them when a wannabe witch turns up dead - strangled with Aunt Ve's scarf - and Ve's sweetheart, Sylar, is found looming over the body. Ve is standing by her man, but Darcy overheard Skylar wish that the victim would disappear - forever. With Harper distracted by her handsome new crush, Darcy is determined to sleuth her way to the truth. But it'll take more than a wish to unravel this mystery....

This book was incredibly cute/fun/light. Perfect if you're in the mood for a cozy or something amusing. It takes the witch theme and does something completely different with it. Rather than just the urban characters, the entire small town, 'Enchanted Village', is charming. Special touches are even added to each business name such as Spellbound books. People who are into a lot of magic and different elements surrounding that may be disappointed, though. To me the witch style is a bit weak that the main character possesses. In this world there are different types of crafters.

It rocks humor without having to try hard and the characters are likeable. The heroine Darcy has some realistic hangups and flaws, while the love interest of the story, Nick, is serious and yummy. From charming to chuckle-inducing, it's the entire town and their interactions which really makes the book have a sparkle.

Who the murderer is was a surprise to a degree (I guessed it before it was revealed, but only at the end), and the clues and lead-up are good for mystery buffs searching for a puzzle worth solving. As is usual with cozies, the violence level isn't high, gore's not there in any way (unless you count disgusting, suspicious rashes!) Pacing is evenly applied, and the writing style holds its own charm.

I do have to wonder if this is an error though and if the writer meant homemade soap, not candles:

"..just about drove Troy nuts when he came home to find the hall mirror suddenly turned into mosaic of the house stinking of lye because I'd try to make homemade candles.."

It was a nice surprise for the emphasis in reading and love of books to be heavy. The heroine's sister, Harper, another fun quirky type, emphasizes throughout the novel how much she loves books. Found this part particularly cute:

"He does manage the bookstore, which is currently my favorite place on earth." Her eyes glazed over. "All those books. If I married him, I could probably work there the rest of my life. Nothing would make me happier."

"What about love?" Ve asked.

"Oh," Harper said solemnly. "I love books."

Overall I'm itching for more of this series and will definitely continue it. It's not the best magic/witch book I've read, but it's charm makes an incredible cozy mystery.

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