Spellbook of the Lost and Found by Moïra Fowley-Doyle
One stormy summer night, Olive and her best friend, Rose, begin to lose things. It starts with simple items like hair clips and jewellery, but soon it’s clear that Rose has lost something bigger; something she won’t talk about.
Then Olive meets three wild, mysterious strangers: Ivy, Hazel and Rowan. Like Rose, they’re mourning losses – and holding tight to secrets.
When they discover the ancient spellbook, full of hand-inked charms to conjure back lost things, they realise it might be their chance to set everything right. Unless it’s leading them towards secrets that were never meant to be found.
I went into this book with fairly low expectations because I hadn’t really heard a ton about it, but ended up really enjoying it! I really enjoyed the story. It’s slower and more focused on the characters than plot while not feeling too slow for the most part. I was really invested in the characters and them figuring out their issues, and I really enjoyed and got really attached to all the characters.
The female friendships in this book were great. They were all so supportive and felt so real. I also loved the romantic relationships and was really rooting for them in the end.
The representation in this book is great: we have two bisexual characters, one who ends up in a f/f relationship and one in a m/f relationship, a lesbian narrator, an Indian side character, a main character who wears a hearing aid. It was really great to read.
My biggest qualm of this book was the magic and that it dragged. There were a couple sections that I thought meandered for no reason, and they could have used a tiny bit of editing. As for the magic, I’m just really picky about magical realism (I’ve written a whole post about it here). I like magical realism when (1) it’s obvious that the world is supposed to be like ours but with magic or (2) when the magic could either be magic or could be explained in some other way. This book never really committed to either. So I didn’t dislike the magical elements, they just weren’t my favourite.
So, yeah, overall, I really enjoyed this book. I’d definitely recommend it if you want something fun and queer but also a little magical.
So, those are my thoughts! What about you? Have you read this? What were your thoughts? Let me know!
Thanks for reading xx