A Curse, A Key, & A Corkscrew
This is a light-hearted humorous urban fantasy novel, or maybe a novella – it’s quite short. It’s also well written and keeps a good pace, so it’s a very quick read.
When Joan was six years old, her school teacher lost her patience, cursed the entire class, and disappeared. Now, it’s almost thirty years later, and Joan may just have stumbled on the clue she needs to break the curse.
The story is about how Joan and a few of her old class mates (not exactly friends all of them) try to decipher the clue to see whether it’s relevant or just a random coincidence. There’s witty banter, romantic complications, and magic. Not entirely wholesome, but good fun.
What I’ll whine about
As the son of two teachers, I feel like I could kind of relate to the poor school teacher who originally cast the curse. Sure, cursing a bunch of six year olds isn’t a nice thing to do, but it felt more like a convenient plot device than an actual villainous act of evil. Then again, this is a book you read for a laugh and some escapism, not to explore the dark corners of the human psyche.
What I’ll gush about
The cast. Sure, most of the people in the book are over-the-top caricatures, but they’re varied, and they’re fun.
Science. It was interesting to see the characters applying scientific methods to investigating the witchcraft. There were also some fun discussions about what’s real or not real, given that witches and curses exist.
A quick fun read for when you need to clear your mind after something heavy and serious.