Review: The Wonkiest Witch by Jeannie Wycherley

Posted May 8, 2020 by Kate

Review: The Wonkiest Witch by Jeannie WycherleyCheck out on Goodreads | Buy on Amazon
Genres: Adult, Supernatural
Series: Wonky Inn #1
Publisher: Bark at the Moon Books
Source: Kindle Unlimited

Alfhild Daemonne has inherited an inn.
And a dead body.
Estranged from her witch mother, and having committed to little in her thirty years, Alf surprises herself when she decides to start a new life.
She heads deep into the English countryside intent on making a success of the once popular inn. However, discovering the murder throws her a curve ball. Especially when she suspects dark magick.
Additionally, a less than warm welcome from several locals, persuades her that a variety of folk – of both the mortal and magickal persuasions – have it in for her.
The dilapidated inn presents a huge challenge for Alf. Uncertain who to trust, she considers calling time on the venture.
Should she pack her bags and head back to London?
Don’t be daft.
Alf’s magickal powers may be as wonky as the inn, but she’s dead set on finding the murderer.
Once a witch always a witch, and this one is fighting back.
A clean and cozy witch mystery.
Take the opportunity to immerse yourself in this fantastic new witch mystery series, from the author of the award winning novel, Crone.
Read The Wonkiest Witch now!

I picked up The Wonkiest Witch to fulfill my History of Magic exam for the OWLs Magical Readathon, which required me to read a book about a witch. I had several hard fantasy’s on my TBR already, so I wanted something comfortable and easy to wrap up my month’s reading with, so I went for The Wonkiest Witch, which I’d added to my Kindle Unlimited TBR not too long before. 

The Wonkiest Witch follows Alfhild Daemonne after her mother passes away, and she receives an inheritance from her father that she hadn’t had until this point – it includes a hefty sum, an estate, and an entire village that she is now the landowner of. She and her mother had a falling out twelve years prior, and her father hadn’t been part of her life since she was ten or so, after Alfhild denounced her witchy heritage and wanted to have a normal bartending life. But after she inherited a dilapidated Inn, with everything else, she decides to get that Inn running again, and has to fall back on her witchy heritage to keep it safe from those in the village who don’t want her business to be a success. 

This book is one that I wrestle with, writing this review. I chose it to be a palette cleanser, and I would say that I was right on the nose with that one. It’s a kind of cozy mystery (with no heat – it’s what the mortals call a “clean romance” but I don’t like that term), but also not. I want to be clear: I enjoyed this book for what it was, and I wrestled with myself for giving it three stars or not. I was looking for a palette cleanser, and that’s what I got. But it just wasn’t very well-written: It was a very simple read, with a very surface-level plot, and it’s not much to write home about. It’s a book that can be easily set down and picked back up later – or not if that’s your choice – it’s entertaining but not engaging or immersive, and is just a very surface and simple read. Which, admittedly, can be nice sometimes. 

The more I poked around, the more I was falling in love with the place. The Inn and it’s contents were ill-fitting and mismatched, just like their new owner. I was a wonky witch in a wonky inn and I had never felt more at home. 

The main character is indeed wonky and wild and fun, but there was less “mystery” in this cozy mystery and just some magic and pleasant coziness. The fact that Alfhild – let’s call her Alf – found a murdered man at her Inn in the first few chapters didn’t let this become a cause for concern to her until 53 percent of the book or so speaks to this. Even then, there was no sleuthing involved, which was a disappointment to me. Instead, she decided to become involved with her craft again, and there was some kind of Showdown towards the end with a rag-tag team of witches and wizards who she didn’t know, and there was an unlikely betrayal that we didn’t really care about because there was little-to-no character development or depth; it was all very disorienting and chaotic. I found myself asking “Why?” an awful lot, as things happened for the purpose of them just happening. 

Most of the book is Alf moving into the town, exploring it’s various shops and meeting people, remarking on the fact that’s a witch, chatting with Jed, the nice handyman and attempted love interest and then Things Happened. Perhaps this is because it’s a short read, but this book’s plot was seemingly held together with yarn and a wish. It was pleasant wish-fulfillment but didn’t go where I’d hoped.

That said, I was mildly entertained. It wasn’t that it was a bad book, it was just poorly held together. Perhaps that makes it just as wonky as the character and her beloved Inn. Some people are looking for a book exactly like this, full of warmth, wonky magic, and pleasant wish fulfillment of being a B&B owner, and for that, I would recommend it. But if you’re looking for something distracting to sink your teeth into or an interesting whodunnit… look elsewhere, I’m afraid. 

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What are some witchy books you enjoy? How about cozy mysteries – I’m constantly on the hunt for recommendations! Let me know in the comments below, I’d love to hear from you!

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