Hex in High Heels
I don’t read that many paranormals, but when I got a short plot summary about Linda Wisdom’s Hex in High Heels I was intrigued and asked to review it, in spite of the fact that it’s the fourth volume in a series, and the cover is very pink. Although I disliked chunks of backstory I encountered in the first third of the novel, somewhat to my surprise I found myself enjoying its latter two thirds a lot.
Together with twelve other witches, Blair Fitzpatrick was banished from the Witches’ Academy in 1310 for some unexplained abuse of magic, and has lived among ordinary people since. Together with her friend and fellow-witch Stasi (the heroine of Wicked by Any Other Name), Blair lives in a very small town next to a lake and a ski resort. She owns an antiques store and does some revenge curses, mostly for downtrodden women, on the side. During a recent magical upheaval, her life was saved by sexy carpenter Jack Harrison, a were/border collie. Since then she has been half-way in love with him, and he also seems to like her, but something is holding him back. Could that be connected to the new owners of the skiing resort?
I liked the fact that Blair and Jack have known each other for several years, and been in love for some time. They are familiar with each other’s quirks and habits, they trust each other, and they understand the problems of the other’s magical nature. While they have the hots for each other, they also exchange jokes and share their concerns. Their romance was believable throughout.
I also like the fact that these characters don’t live in limbo, but are firmly settled in a net of friends and acquaintances. This is especially true for Blair and her witch friends, but also other members of the community. The witches live surrounded by magical creatures, and by accident Blair ends up with both Horace the sex-obsessed gargoyle, Irma the ghost, and Fluff and Puff the demented bunny slippers. Oh, and a gang of truly sleazy elves turns up. I rolled my eyes when those creatures first appeared in all their over-the-top whackiness, but guess what? I found them charming by the end of the book, mostly because Linda Wisdom doesn’t permit them to overwhelm the story.
Blair is one powerful witch, and in contrast to many a romance heroine, she is entirely unapologetic about it. Readers who love strong heroines will find one to their liking here. True, she has one throwback moment to brainless-heroine behavior, but mercifully it’s short. Jake complements her perfectly in that while he’s very strong in his own way, he’s entirely at ease with her brand of energetic determination.
Hex in High Heels starts with high wackiness and too much backstory, but it settles into a charming and amusing tale. At the end, there is one unnecessarily cheesy moment, but as it doesn’t concern the romance, it didn’t bother me much. If you like funny paranormals, you might well give this one a try.