Plain Kate by Erin Bow

Summary: Plain Kate lives in a world of superstitions and curses, where a song can heal a wound and a shadow can work deep magic. As the wood-carver's daughter, Kate held a carving knife before a spoon, and her wooden talismans are so fine that some even call her “witch-blade”: a dangerous nickname in a country where witches are hunted and burned in the square.

For Kate and her village have fallen on hard times. Kate’s father has died, leaving her alone in the world. And a mysterious fog now covers the countryside, ruining crops and
spreading fear of hunger and sickness. The townspeople are looking for someone to blame, and their eyes have fallen on Kate.

Enter Linay, a stranger with a proposition: In exchange for her shadow, he’ll give Kate the means to escape the angry town, and what’s more, he’ll grant her heart’s wish. It’s a chance for her to start over, to find a home, a family, a place to belong. But Kate soon realizes she can't live shadowless forever -- and that Linay's designs are darker than she ever dreamed.(Goodreads)

Katerina Svetlana or Plain Kate carves wood like know other carver. Her name Plain Kate was actually started as a joke. She is not really plain. Her father taught her everything and has been the only parent she has had since her mother died giving birth to her. Since she was young she has had the talent to create wondrous things which has made her feared and a little bit hated even because she is thought to be a witch. Not only is her talent suspicious but how she appears as well. Her eyes are said to be witches eyes. See everyone here likes to blame everything bad happening on witches. It is not like they make up witches though since they are real in this world. They call the disease that killed her father the Witch's Fever.

Everything changes when she meets Linay who of course has to be a witch. She strikes up a deal with him that changes the course of her life forever. But before that there is something you should know on how she coped with the death of her father. It involves some kittens that she found. These kittens ended up being her reason to carry on. It's important.

There were moments where this book reminded me of others because of it's kind of old values. Like you can't talk with men and there is a whole bunch of rules with a group of people she meets called the Roamers. It annoyed me more than it probably should have. But I got over it. The way this book is written is kind of... I'm not sure how to describe it. It is just written like an old book but it's modern as well.

The deal that she strikes with Linay actually is the starting point for me where everything gets interesting. Not only does it start a course of events that changes everything for her but also...I should explain something first. Witches have to sacrifice something or have an even exchange for something to do magic. So in return for something special she receives her hearts desire. I've got to warn you a lot of the magic done is with the sacrifice of someones blood so it is kind of freaky. The book was weird but it was good too. It's a good book for fantasy lovers. You just have to get used to the setting it's in. But overall it was good and you should read it if you like stories about witches.


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