Raven’s Haven for Women of Magic, a review by Joanna

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Raven’s Haven for Women of Magic

Anna Kirtlan

Published 2021

113 pages


This is an adorable urban fantasy novella set in my hometown of Wellington, New Zealand, the start of a trilogy about a family of talented witches and their familiars. I borrowed it from a friend, who knows the author, having read and enjoyed her memoir about sailing around the Pacific a few years ago. From the blurb and cover, I was expecting it to be aimed at adolescents, but between the intermittent swearing and the political in-jokes, I think it’s actually better for adults who don’t take their fantasy too seriously.

Cassandra Frost enjoys her job at Wellington City Council, preferring to mostly interact with humans and hide her own magical abilities, but when forced to reveal them to a colleague to prevent a terrible accident, she calls on her powerful grandmother Winifred to help make him forget. Then she learns that the feline familiars at Winifred’s retirement home have been disappearing: will Cassie embrace her powers to stop a dastardly plot?
This has a cover full of cats, an appealing heroine, some hilarious support characters including some very naughty old ladies, romance, adventure and magic – what’s not to love? You probably need to live here to get some of the humour – like the thinly disguised cat-hating politician, whose name is only one letter different from a real-life mustachiod villain… I also enjoyed the references to various Wellington streets and buildings, and the digs at our local council. Can’t wait for the next one! NB while I read the paperback edition, it is actually available very cheaply on Amazon, for any international readers who like the sound of it.

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