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Review of "Witches of Santa Anna" Books 1-7 + 8-13 by Lauren Barnholdt and Aaron Gorvine

Genre: witches, YA, paranormal, romance
Rating: 3 stars



Books 1-7

Santa Anna is a private school which Natalia has transferred to, following a mysterious incident at her previous school.
She immediately captures the attention of Campbell Elliot, school hunk and captain of the football team; except he has been ‘claimed’ by Raine Marsden, school ‘It Girl’, and he has competition for Natalia’s affection in the shape of team mate and friend Brody Ketterling (the Third!!).
As the title of the book suggests, there are witches at Santa Anna school and the plot revolves around the nightmare which they have planned for several of the main characters . . .and the fight that ensues.
As a female lead I did not think that Natalia was the nicest I have read. She was deceptive and lied and was happy to use Brody to make Campbell jealous and vice versa. I think she wants to appear as weak-willed but is manipulative.
My favourite character in the books was Brody. Although he was secretive and dark at times, there were reasons for his behaviour and I felt there was a goodness in him . . .and if there wasn’t I am a sucker for a bad boy!!!!
However, the story in books 1-7 was more escapism and romance with a little bit of action thrown in . . . . . if I had bought these ‘novellas’ separately , rather than in the discounted version I have them, I would be one unhappy bunny!! Even for novellas I felt that I was being short changed as a reader, especially in the case of the first seven books . . . . but I did carry on with the story, mainly beacause I was curious!!!

Books 8-13

I felt that the story was far more developed in these later books, as were the characters. For those readers who may have been frustrated with the lack of action in books 1-7, season 2 tries to make up for that and as a reader I felt more connected to the events.
Natalia appears to have matured during the book jump :-)! She is more independent, courageous and less needy.
The story is more tense, which held my attention – but I now have to wait for the discounted version of Season 3!!!


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