Book Releases, Book Review, Books!, Signal Boost

Review: These Witches Don’t Burn by Isabel Sterling

Hey all, Dani here.

Well, this post is going up pretty late. Sorry. It was a long day and I forgot to finish my prep on this one until I was getting ready for bed and realized that I hadn’t gotten any new WordPress notifications. Whoops.



Hannah’s a witch, but not the kind you’re thinking of. She’s the real deal, an Elemental with the power to control fire, earth, water, and air. But even though she lives in Salem, Massachusetts, her magic is a secret she has to keep to herself. If she’s ever caught using it in front of a Reg (read: non-witch), she could lose it. For good. So, Hannah spends most of her time avoiding her ex-girlfriend (and fellow Elemental Witch) Veronica, hanging out with her best friend, and working at the Fly By Night Cauldron selling candles and crystals to tourists, goths, and local Wiccans.

But dealing with her ex is the least of Hannah’s concerns when a terrifying blood ritual interrupts the end-of-school-year bonfire. Evidence of dark magic begins to appear all over Salem, and Hannah’s sure it’s the work of a deadly Blood Witch. The issue is, her coven is less than convinced, forcing Hannah to team up with the last person she wants to see: Veronica.

While the pair attempt to smoke out the Blood Witch at a house party, Hannah meets Morgan, a cute new ballerina in town. But trying to date amid a supernatural crisis is easier said than done, and Hannah will have to test the limits of her power if she’s going to save her coven and get the girl, especially when the attacks on Salem’s witches become deadlier by the day.

Isabel Sterling’s delightful, suspenseful debut is equal parts sweet romance and thrilling mystery. With everything she loves on the line, Hannah must confront this murderous villain before her coven–and any chance she has with the new girl–is destroyed.

My Thoughts

Rating: 3.5 stars

This book was good. I read it quickly, and it had sounded like something right up my alley, aligning pretty well with stuff I’m interested in typically. Sadly, it just didn’t end up working for me, which is upsetting.

There were a few emotional roller coaster moments in this book, and one revelation that completely surprised me…which bumped this story from a 3 star rating to a 3.5 star rating.

I liked the way witches were set up in this book. There are Elemental Witches, Caster Witches, and Blood Witches, and each has its own specialization. The main focus in this book is obviously the Elemental, since two of the main characters are Elemental Witches, but it also has an okay focus on Blood Witches. Personally I would have liked more depth and development into the witchy lessons and training practices and such. I did like that there was also a focus on Wicca itself, and an explanation that Regs can get some magical results from practicing, just not anywhere close to the results of a born witch. It was interesting.

But the Blood Witch encounter from before the book started didn’t really feel like a developed idea to me. Oh, and Hannah and Veronica’s relationship clearly has/had some issues. Hannah even brings up the toxicity of their relationship to Veronica as a reason why they would not work if they thought about getting together again. But at least they were there for each other through all the weird danger popping up around them.

I liked this book, but I didn’t love it, and honestly I can’t say that I’ll pick up the next one. But if you like witchy mystery thriller type stories, give this one a try. Just because it wasn’t my cup of tea, doesn’t mean that everyone will feel that way.

Where to Buy

You can pick up your own copy of this book from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Books-a-million, Book Depository, or your local independent bookstore.

2 thoughts on “Review: These Witches Don’t Burn by Isabel Sterling”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s