“Spellweaver” by Claire.J.Bridegeman comes under the genre of urban fantasy and young-adult literature.A quite fascinating debut novel by the author and is a pleasure read for a couple of hours.
The story triggered off with the female protagonist ,Felicity Lucas, a teenager of fifteen,attending her mother’s funeral. Felicity pitifully lacked in her social skills,failed to befriend anyone in her hostel life and after her mother’s death as she moved to her father’s flat whom she hardly knew,she felt miserable.Being introvert and extremely emotional she was nervous enough on her first day to the new school ,the Greenfields High.But when she met Hollie,the stylish,exuberant girl who befriended her in a moment and according to her became ‘BBF’ ,Felicity’s social life began to change. Holli and her twin brother Jamie made Felicity understand the definition of friendship,the joy and happiness it had to offer.It was when Felicity was about to come out tearing the cocoon in which she used to live that some unknown facts about her mother was revealed to her.Her mother,Audrey Lucas,seldom spent any time with her when she was alive,had an indifferent relationship with her and Felicity had no idea about her whereabouts.It was when she discovered a journal of her containing several arcane signs and letters ,Felicity realized how little she really knew about her !
Things began to happen rapidly after that. The school counsellor Mr. Oakley suddenly left the school,Felicity and her friends met Oliver, a new boy who kept on staring at Felicity with an odd ,strange look .Then came that eventful Christmas night ,Hollie was attacked by Oliver at her own house and she swore that she had seen Oliver conjuring flames from his palm ! Somehow,Oliver was kept hostage by Jamie and told bizarre things to Felicity about her origin and her mother,that she was going to die as soon as ‘Others’ could get her trail.Would Oliver be able to get hold of Felicity’s spell-book ? Would she ever be able to carry on the legacy of her mother who belonged to the ‘Deepworld’ ? The book has unfolded the mystery as Felicity realized the real meaning of life,love and friendship.
Pros : Claire has a smart way of story-telling.She has developed the main characters carefully and its not only an aimless fantasy but also a tale of friendship. As Claire said ” I want to tell a fantasy story but more than that I want to tell a human story..”.
Cons : The first few chapters have a slow pace and the character of Felicity sometimes seems to be too passive. And of course one can not help to see the shadow of the great,beloved Harry Potter. From my side its 3.5/5.
Claire Bridgeman is a 28 year old English teacher form England.”Spellweaver” is her debut novel.