Spells for Forgetting, Adrienne Young

A blue hazed image of trees. There are a few starbursts in yellow, and the title is in white

On Saoirse island, the lives of Emery and August have been entwined since they were children. Fourteen years ago, August and his mother left the island, severing Emery’s heart in two. But now he’s back, and he’s not welcome, by anyone. They want him to take care of his mother and return to where he came from. Emery doesn’t know how to handle August being back, her nightmares have returned, and she worked too hard to forget him. Or at least, put her feelings for him behind a thick wall. But all that is about to change.

I like the subtle magic of the island, the way the story weaved through the past and present, the chaotic mystery unfolding, and how utterly small town the island inhabitants are. Even when they were on my last nerve, they were perfectly written into that role. This feels more on the YA side, so it’s odd that our two main characters are in their 30s. Spells for Forgetting is sometimes dramatic, but I think it needs to be, and it suits it well. Overall, I enjoyed this one. Thank you, Random House/Ballantine, for sending this along.

Book Links (releasing September 27th)


About the Book

Emery Blackwood’s life changed forever the night her best friend was found dead and the love of her life, August Salt, was accused of murdering her. Years later, she is doing what her teenage self swore she never would: living a quiet existence on the misty, remote shores of Saoirse Island and running the family’s business, Blackwood’s Tea Shoppe Herbal Tonics & Tea Leaf Readings. But when the island, rooted in folklore and magic, begins to show signs of strange happenings, Emery knows that something is coming. The morning she wakes to find that every single tree on Saoirse has turned color in a single night, August returns for the first time in fourteen years and unearths the past that the town has tried desperately to forget.

August knows he is not welcome on Saiorse, not after the night everything changed. As a fire raged on at the Salt family orchard, Lily Morgan was found dead in the dark woods, shaking the bedrock of their tight-knit community and branding August a murderer. When he returns to bury his mother’s ashes, he must confront the people who turned their backs on him and face the one wound from his past that has never healed—Emery. But the town has more than one reason to want August gone, and the emergence of deep betrayals and hidden promises spanning generations threaten to reveal the truth behind Lily’s mysterious death once and for all.


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