My Rating ~ Four stars
RELEASE DATE: 5 January 2021
Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton & Hachette Australia
Format: E-ARC & Paperback
Source: NetGalley and Hachette Australia
Kappa Rho Nu isn’t your average sorority. Their parties are notorious. Their fundraisers are known for being Westerly College’s most elaborate affairs. But beneath the veil of Greek life and prestige, the sisters of Kappu Rho Nu share a secret: they’re a coven of witches. For Vivi Deveraux, being one of Kappa Rho Nu’s Ravens means getting a chance to redefine herself. For Scarlett Winters, a bonafide Raven and daughter of a legacy Raven, pledge this year means living up to her mother’s impossible expectations of becoming Kappa Rho Nu’s next president. Scarlett knows she’d be the perfect candidate — that is, if she didn’t have one human-sized skeleton in her closet…. When Vivi and Scarlett are paired as big and little for initiation, they find themselves sinking into the sinister world of blood oaths and betrayals.
Thankyou to Hodder & Stoughton for providing me with a copy of The Ravens, via NetGalley, and Hachette Australia for sending me a physical copy, in exchange for an honest review.
Vivi has led a life of moving around every time her mother decided their current living arrangement wasn’t favoured by the tarot cards, or her gut feeling, but she’s finally off to college to start a new life as, well, whoever she wants to be.
Scarlett is, and has always been, expected to become sorority Kappa Rho Nu’s next president by her family.
The sorority girls, known as The Ravens, are secretly a coven of witches and no-one is more surprised than Vivi when she is offered a place. Things are not going to plan this year though, and secrets, threats and a shadowy figure could spell more danger than the girls realise.
I always struggle slightly with books about sororities, because, living in Australia, I have absolutely no idea what they’re about or understand the appeal of them, but The Ravens managed to keep my interest with its abundance of magic and witchcraft. Reminiscent of The Craft, the magic system is pretty straightforward witchery, with a mashup of tarot and elements being the focus of each girl’s powers. Having such a tried and true way of explaining the magic did make for a relaxing read, because I didn’t feel like I really needed to learn a whole new magic system. It did come across as a tiny bit cheesy at times, but to be fair, it was teenage witches at school, it probably fit the bill. (Are college kids still teenagers? Excuse my ignorance if they’re not, we have a different school system here! If not, the characters in The Raven definitely felt like teenagers) 😅
I enjoyed both Vivi and Scarlett’s characters, and a few of the sorority girls stood out as personalities of their own, notably Mei and Tiffany (although the rest of the girls did have a tendency to blend into the background, as cookie cutter side characters). The mystery seemed quite obvious throughout most of the book, but in the end there was a clever twist, that wrapped the story up nicely (so nicely that I’m not sure why this isn’t going to be a standalone?)
I think this was a fun, engaging way of looking at a modern day witch coven, but, although growing up I loved teenage witch stories, I think I prefer the atmospheric ones set in old times nowadays. This seemed to lack a bit of the spook factor, but was still very entertaining and I would definitely recommend it to anyone looking for a teenage witch style read! The cover is also absolutely stunning!
Photo via my Instagram account – Bookbookowl