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The Frozen Sea

Books to the ceiling, books to the sky, my pile of books is a mile high. How I love them! How I need them! I'll have a long beard by the time I read them!

The Witch of Little Italy by Suzanne Palmieri

I think the unbelievable nature of some of the circumstances in this book took away from my enjoyment of it. Not the magical aspects - I loved the idea that all of the Amore women had the ability to see into the future, or grow plants and make potions that could take away memories or hurts, or even heal, and I liked that these women often made stupid, flawed decisions because of them. They were magical, but they weren't infallible. There are a few concessions I'd like to make on this point though.


What I didn't like was the fact that Elly's mother encouraged her daughter to engage in a relationship with a guy who was abusive, both physically and mentally, and then kicked her out and belittled her when the inevitable happened. Elly was encouraged by everyone to forgive her mother's neglect, narcissism and emotional abuse based on the fact that Elly's grandmother ignored Elly's mother as a child, but that just doesn't sit well with me. Also, while I said that I liked the fact that these women weren't infallible, some of the decisions they made based on their gifts were beyond the pale. I'm just not sure how you could do some of those things to the people you love. I don't think there's anything that excuses or justify some of their actions.

I also couldn't connect with the idea of Elly and Anthony's insta-love. We're told that they fell in love as children, but we never see the growth of their relationship or even WHY they love each other. We're just told they do, and that they're meant to be. 

I did enjoy the interweaving of past and future, and the idea that past selves and future selves could be separate parts of a whole person, even having friendships and carrying on conversations as if they were real. I just think this novel could have worked better had there been more realistic character development.