Spellbook of the Lost and Found is a wonderful and magical book about the havoc wreaked by the titular spellbook, found in an old oak tree. We follow the stories of Olive and her best friend Rose, who begin to lose their things following the summer party in their little Irish town; Hazel, her brother Rowan and their friend Ivy, who are running away from terrible parents; and friends Laurel, Holly, and Ash, who first find the spellbook and cast the spell within to return their lost diaries to them.
As belongings begin to go missing all over town, the characters' paths cross leading them to discover more about the spellbook as items and loved ones of their own seem to be disappearing from right under their noses. The setting is wonderfully evocative, with all the closeness and tension of the small town, the dark and magical nooks and crannies of the old forest, and the eeriness of the abandoned housing estate.
Spellbook has a similar feel to Laure Eve's The Graces, with some characters believing there is magic taking place and others questioning and refusing to believe. There's a real sense of the heightened emotion and stakes of a teenage summer with stormy weather, new friendships being formed, and romances being sparked much like in The Graces.
There's a big cast of characters, but once you've got your head around which tree-named characters belong together it soon makes sense. There are twists and turns and magic and kissing and storms and hangovers and families and friendships and I had such a great time being immersed in this world. If you enjoy a bit of magical realism I'd definitely pick this book up. Bonus points for bisexual characters and same sex love making.
I received a copy of Spellbook of the Lost and Found from Penguin Random House in return for an honest review:
which this is!