Books · Reviews

SPELLED by Betsy Schow


Genre: Young Adult/Fiction/Fantasy


Fairy Tale Survival Rule #32: If you find yourself at the mercy of a wicked witch, sing a romantic ballad and wait for your Prince Charming to save the day.

Yeah, no thanks. Dorthea is completely princed out. Sure being the crown princess of Emerald has its perks—like Glenda Original ball gowns and Hans Christian Louboutin heels. But a forced marriage to the not-so-charming prince Kato is so not what Dorthea had in mind for her enchanted future.

Talk about unhappily ever after.

Trying to fix her prince problem by wishing on a (cursed) star royally backfires, leaving the kingdom in chaos and her parents stuck in some place called “Kansas.” Now it’s up to Dorthea and her pixed off prince to find the mysterious Wizard of Oz and undo the curse…before it releases the wickedest witch of all and spells The End for the world of Story.

Opinion: This book was FANTASTIC!! It is The Wizard of Oz, mixed with Alice in Wonderland, sprinkled with a dash of Disney princess stories and baked together with a little bit of every fairy-tale you know. But this story really “takes the cake” with how creative it is with the story line and the lingo each character uses.

Dorthea is one spoiled princess of Emerald, and very used to getting her way. Except for the fact that she is unable to leave her palace, ever, just like each Emerald princess before her for the fear that the curse that was placed on them years ago would come into action. But after Dorthea’s parents (the King and Queen of Emerald) inform her that she must marry Prince Kato, a prince she was not fond of upon their first meeting, things start to take a turn for the worst. After Dorthea is given a cursed star to wish upon (unbeknownst to her) she ends up changing the entire realm of Story and taking away all the rules. Now that the evil witch Griz is after Dorthea, Kato and a servant girl named Rexi come to her aid and try to fight to turn things back to normal.

“Who needs parents when a land of adventure awaits? Once you find a fair or two, you’ll never never miss em.”

– Neverland Orphanage Handbook

This series got me HOOKED, line, sinker, and now I have happily drowned in the world of Story. There are a lot of fairy tale remakes coming out right now, especially because of the television show Once Upon a Time and the musical Wicked giving us new twists on the stories. Betsy Schow did a wonderful job of twisting the standard Wizard of Oz tale into an action packed fantasy adventure with an entirely new twist. After Dorthea royally screws up the world of Story, making her home and family disappear, she must fight through different lands to find a fix. Not only does Prince Kato tag along, but he turns into a chimera which happens to be the creatures he rules over. I found the relationship between Dorthea and Kato to be, quite hilarious. Not only is this Prince trying to marry Dorthea (for reasons that I will not spoil) but now he has turned into a full blown beast. Their back and forth banter was highly enjoyable, but the character of Rexi was really who stole the “sarcasm show”. I absolutely loved Rexi’s character from start to finish, and I am so glad that she was involved in this story to help Dorthea.

The author went the extra mile to put little exerts from made up books and magazines at the beginning of every chapter as well (as you will see above and below), which really made the story feel well imagined and real. Each chapter also starts out with a quirky title like “Dream a Little Nightmare for Me” or “It’s a Big World After All”. I love when an author really puts it ALL into their writing, and I definitely feel like Betsy Schow did just that. Apart from the amazing plot and the characters, the lingo that they used was hilarious. “Pixed” was a favorite for most of the characters, which I assume is some sort of form of “pissed” or a curse word. I am not really sure, but I love it nonetheless.

“It’s not really a party until a fight breaks out an all seven dwarfs are passed out underneath the punch bowl.”

-Excerpt from “How to Have a Blast at Your Next Ball” in Fairy Vogue

All in all, this book is so SO GREAT. I cannot wait for there to be a sequel, and there better be one! If you love the Wizard of Oz tale but love the strange creatures and amazing adventure from Alice in Wonderland, then you will go crazy for this book! This isn’t one of those books that is hot and heavy in the romance between characters, it is all about the story and the turmoil wrapped up in it! I HIGHLY recommend this book, I read it in one day so you know it has to be good!

5 Stars


10 thoughts on “SPELLED by Betsy Schow

  1. This book is currently sitting on the floor in my living room waiting (with so many other as yet unopened books) to be picked up. Thank you for the awesome review–perhaps this was the push I’d been looking for. (Then again, I’ll probably continue getting distracted by all the other pretty shiny reads. One day, books, I will read you! XD )

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m super excited to read this! I have had it on my list for awhile. I love it when authors write about bratty girls and they gradually grow. If you loved this then you’re bound to enjoy Rebel Belle by Rachel Hawkins. I also have a review for that one and if you want you can check it out. I’m very happy to see that you liked this! Great review 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I have some more recommendations! You should try The Secret of Dreadwillow Carse. It’s another middle grade creepy story with a friendship. It’s on Netgalley so you can still request it. Also you should try Triple Moon. It’s similar to Spelled and Rebel Belle. It’s about twin witches who are brats. They are getting some magic training over the summer. I hope you enjoy all my recommendations!

    Liked by 1 person

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