Mostly, we get another point of view (Laurel’s cousin Mildred, the ‘fibre witch’). It was a bit jarring at first, I’m not always the best at similar names and really thought it was Marigold and I’d missed something big… but no, it’s just a different character each time.
The characterization and plot remains cozy, with fun little experiments each time. This time, we have a much more rural life with alpacas! And of course a new neighbor to date (gay and trans this time ). And a mystery to solve… that doesn’t end up mattering overmuch?
Overall, they’re nice quick reads as a palette cleanser. I miss Laurel and Marigold (they show up for a bit, but it really doesn’t count). But we’ll see how it goes from here!
And she felt better–or would once she’d built up her energy again–to not be living in a place so heavy in toxins.
I know I’m reading a book about witchcraft. But … “toxins”? Oy.
This called for Witchy Chat–the name some of her younger relatives–well Laurel, really–gave to the family group chat for witches and everyone else who knew about or was interested in magic stuff. Pretty much everyone, then.
With how short these are, a new point of view each time is somewhat confusing… First though: Laurel is related? Weren’t they dating? But this is Mildred.
“Don’t be. But I’m sorry about my mum… she’s quite convinced you saw a ghost. I had to tell her that you were well travelled and stuff and very unlikely to believe her folk tales.” “Uh…” “Ohhh. You do believe in ghosts. Bugger. Now I’ve got to apologise to my mother. Again. I was quite sure you were just being polite about her old stories. You do believe in ghosts. Have you seen one before?”
Oh communication and assumptions.
“You’re a witch! No wonder my mother speaks highly of you. It’s always been her regret that she could never do magic–you know, like everyone wants to when they’re a kid–but she collects information like folk tales and traditions and stuff, and she’s always hoped she could be part of it… Can you? Can you show her how to do stuff?”
Everyone knows about and odd so accepting of witches, but they’re not “public” knowledge. It’s kind of weird.
“Realistically… I didn’t have it too bad, not compared to other people I know. There was some teasing and some weird remarks, but nothing got beyond that. Being trans and all… did you pick that up?” Anneke looked away, as if waiting for Mildred’s response before she re-engaged.
Ah. Interesting. I certainly didn’t.
As Mildred watched, the woman suddenly became corporeal, real flesh and blood. She didn’t look so old fashioned now–her clothes were, for sure, but otherwise she wouldn’t have attracted a second glance from any passer-by”.
A bit convenient so far as closure goes.