Like Harry Potter, but darker

16 Jun


Imagine a world in which non-witches are unaware of witches in England. J. K. Rowling took one look at it in her Harry potter series. But Sally Green is onto something infinitely darker in Half Bad, the first in a trilogy about warring witches. White witches are good; black witches are bad. Nathan is a half-breed: his mother was a white witch and his father was the most notorious black witch. Persecuted and abused, Nathan is confined by the White witches council, who treat him cruelly. He escapes in an attempt to find his father before his seventeenth birthday. If he can do so, his father will give him three gifts and come into his own as a witch. If he does not, he will die.

It seems that people either really love or really hate this book. I really loved it. I think one of the problems some people might have is that the author shifts between first person and second person narration. I think people expecting a lot of magic will also be disappointed. Nathan doesn’t do magic yet because he hasn’t turned 17 and received his gift yet.

I really feel that Sally Green has raised some interesting questions about tolerance and persecution. There is quite a bit of graphic violence, too. Green has also created a gritty, alternative modern England, which isn’t the one I fantasize about visiting, but it certainly interesting to read about.

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