Monday, October 30, 2023

Book Review: For Girls Who Walk Through Fire, by Kim DeRose

Guest review by: Becki Bayley

Bea was surprised to find that, despite casting her revenge spell, she’d yet to reduce her anxiety or remove him from her life. If anything, in a weird way, it felt as if he’d been drawn in closer.

Her mom now talked about him all the time, updating the family at dinner on his status, fretting over his health and what it might mean for Margaret and the kids, worrying about how this would impact the trajectory of his career, thinking up ways to help their family out. Just hearing his name was triggering enough, but to listen to all that sympathy made Bea want to scream at the top of her lungs.

And apparently, she wasn’t the only one.

“We should really go bring Margaret and the kids a meal,” her mom suggested at dinner one evening. “And just sit with them and spend some time distracting the kids. Also, I think it would be good for all of us to go visit Michael in the hospital.”

“Jesus! Mom!” Otis finally snapped. And then caught himself when Bea kicked him under the table. He glanced up apologetically.

Four girls from a victim’s support group find a way to really make a difference in their abusers’ lives. But will it really make a difference for their emotional burdens?

Official synopsis:
Book Review: For Girls Who Walk Through Fire, by Kim DeRose
Elliott D’Angelo-Brandt is sick and tired of putting up with it all. Every week, she attends a support group for teen victims of sexual assault, but all they do is talk. Elliott’s done with talking. What she wants is justice.

And she has a plan for getting it: a spell book that she found in her late mom’s belongings that actually works. Elliott recruits a coven of fellow survivors from the group. She, Madeline, Chloe, and Bea don’t have much in common, but they are united in their rage at a system that heaps judgments on victims and never seems to punish those who deserve it.

As they each take a turn casting a hex against their unrepentant assailants, the girls find themselves leaning on each other in ways they never expected—and realizing that revenge has heavy implications. Each member of the coven will have to make a choice: continue down the path of magical vigilantism or discover what it truly means to claim their power.

This book really looked at whether revenge is what helps someone move on. When Elliott, Madeline, Chloe, and Bea join forces to become a coven that can exact revenge on those who hurt them and changed their lives forever, they’re willing to pay almost any price for the satisfaction of seeing their abusers suffer. But as their side effects get worse, and they see others paying the price owed by their abusers, they get a chance to look at not what they’re owed, but what might really make them feel better.

Each of the girls had her own backstory, coping mechanisms, and ideal concept of revenge. Their responses to how well their spells worked also made each of them more individual. It was easy to imagine many of their responses as realistic. The book was definitely worth 4 out of 5 stars, and the ending was not easily predictable. This would be an enjoyable read to those who like witchy stories, vigilante justice, and a little bit of family-style drama thrown in.

{click here to purchase on Amazon, only $8.99 on Kindle - affiliate link}

Becki Bayley is a Gemini who enjoys reading (obviously), cozy hoodies, and snuggling with her cats. Check out more of what she’s up to on Instagram, where she posts as PoshBecki.


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