Saturday, September 22, 2018

Review: Hocus Pocus & the All-New Sequel

Title: Hocus Pocus & the All-New Sequel
Author: A. W. Jantha
Genre: Humor, Fantasy Fiction, Paranormal fiction
Hocus Pocus is beloved by Halloween enthusiasts all over the world. Diving once more into the world of witches, this electrifying two-part young adult novel, released on the twenty-fifth anniversary of the 1993 film, marks a new era of Hocus Pocus. Fans will be spellbound by a fresh retelling of the original film, followed by the all-new sequel that continues the story with the next generation of Salem teens.

Shortly after moving from California to Salem, Massachusetts, Max Dennison finds himself in hot water when he accidentally releases a coven of witches, the Sanderson sisters, from the afterlife. Max, his sister, and his new friends (human and otherwise) must find a way to stop the witches from carrying out their evil plan and remaining on earth to torment Salem for all eternity.

Twenty-five years later, Max and Allison's seventeen-year-old daughter, Poppy, finds herself face-to-face with the Sanderson sisters in all their sinister glory. When Halloween celebrations don't quite go as planned, it's a race against time as Poppy and her friends fight to save her family and all of Salem from the witches' latest death-defying scheme.
I need to stop being this rebel without a cause. For the last year or two I've been picking up books solely based on their cover or if they were recommended to me. I've been hopping right into them without even glancing at the blurb or reading any reviews. Do yourselves a favor... skip to part two of this one if you've already seen the movie LOL. I read a few chapters before I realized that "hey this isn't a frickin epilogue." Nope... just a reiteration of the movie :::insert eye roll here::: I mean, come on! Even the title should have been a dead ringer. It's the typography, okay! I pay attention to the larger words and ignore little things like the ampersand. Batting for a thousand here.

I'm only a few pages into part two at this point and I've already noticed some parallels between the new characters and the movie ones. Isabella Richards is a more diverse Allison and Poppy takes after her parents, Max and Allison Dennison (surprise, surprise). BTW, I'm just now reading the blurb...because I was annoyed that they hadn't yet introduced Poppy by name yet and that alone pissed me off. Now I can't imagine this chick as anything other than a pink haired troll... because so far they've described Travis and Isabella but not nameless Poppy. It seriously bugs me, guys! I even know what Mr. Dennison is wearing! So I'm just gonna continue along with an out of focus image of Poppy the troll in black jeans and a plain sweatshirt until this happens. Stay tuned...

At this rate, I'm never going to finish this book. I'm internally eye rolling due to the fact that I've only now read a few more pages and it's so dang predictable. Still don't know what Poppy looks like but she's LGBT (Right on!) I'm still going with pink hair. Several chapters later and she's blonde :::facepalm::: so much for my pink troll theory. More on know that saying "like father, like son?" Same thing applies here for Poppy and her dad. STUBBORN MULES, I tell you!

*Spoiler Alert* The witches are back! Obvi... and their arrival was anticlimactic and soooo cliche. I hate to judge a book halfway through but so far it's a major letdown. It had so much potential! I'm hoping it picks up enough so that this doesn't become another DNF. I will say that I love the chapter titles though! But goddammit, the switching between first and third person POV is really ticking me off. Poppy's chapters are first (loosely, because some points are debatable) while the witches are third. How about some consistency?! 

Okay, guys... I tried. I really did! I pushed to 40% and I can't force myself to read this any longer. It didn't live up to the hype at all. I don't even want to finish writing anymore of this review because it has already taken up too much residence in my brain. They really dropped the ball on this one. Too many recycled scenarios from the movie. Sorry... this was dud and I don't recommend it.