Review: Toil & Trouble

Title: Toil & Trouble: 15 Tales of Women & Witchcraft

Author: Jessica Spotswood and Tess Sharpe(Editors)

Genre: Young Adult

Release Date: August 28th, 2018

Synopsis: “A young adult fiction anthology of 15 stories featuring contemporary, historical, and futuristic stories featuring witchy heroines who are diverse in race, class, sexuality, religion, geography, and era.

Are you a good witch or a bad witch?

Glinda the Good Witch. Elphaba the Wicked Witch. Willow. Sabrina. Gemma Doyle. The Mayfair Witches. Ursula the Sea Witch. Morgan le Fey. The three weird sisters from Macbeth.

History tells us women accused of witchcraft were often outsiders: educated, independent, unmarried, unwilling to fall in line with traditional societal expectations.

Bold. Powerful. Rebellious.

A bruja’s traditional love spell has unexpected results. A witch’s healing hands begin to take life instead of giving it when she ignores her attraction to a fellow witch. In a terrifying future, women are captured by a cabal of men crying witchcraft and the one true witch among them must fight to free them all. In a desolate past, three orphaned sisters prophesize for a murderous king. Somewhere in the present, a teen girl just wants to kiss a boy without causing a hurricane.

From good witches to bad witches, to witches who are a bit of both, this is an anthology of diverse witchy tales from a collection of diverse, feminist authors. The collective strength of women working together—magically or mundanely–has long frightened society, to the point that women’s rights are challenged, legislated against, and denied all over the world. Toil & Trouble delves deep into the truly diverse mythology of witchcraft from many cultures and feminist points of view, to create modern and unique tales of witchery that have yet to be explored.”

My thoughts (1)

I don’t read many anthologies so I wasn’t sure what to expect going into this. I found some of these stories to be a bit rushed and short and some to drag on and some I adored and didn’t want to end! I did end up enjoying this collection overall and loved all the witchy girls in this. This collection was full of diverse characters and awesome themes that showcase the badassness (that’s definitely a word OK) of females.

You go girls.


Starsong by Tehlor Kay Mejia: ⭐⭐⭐/5

Afterbirth by Andrea Cremer: ⭐⭐⭐/5

The Heart In Her Hands by Tess Sharpe: ⭐⭐⭐⭐/5

Death In The Sawtooths by Lindsay Smith: ⭐⭐⭐/5

The Truth About Queenie by Brandy Colbert: ⭐⭐⭐/5

The Moonapple Menagerie by Shveta Thakrar: ⭐⭐⭐/5

The Legend of Stone Mary by Robin Talley: ⭐⭐⭐⭐/5

The One Who Stayed by Nova Ren Suma: ⭐⭐⭐/5

Divine Are The Stars by Zoraida Córdova: ⭐⭐⭐/5

Daughters Of Baba Yaga by Brenna Yovanoff: ⭐⭐⭐/5

The Well Witch by Kate Hart: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐/5

Beware Of Girls With Crooked Mouths by Jessica Spotswood: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐/5

Love Spell by Anna-Marie McLemore: ⭐⭐⭐⭐/5

The Gherin Girls by Emery Lord: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐/5

This was my absolute favorite out of all the short-stories!

Why They Watch Us Burn by Elizabeth May: ⭐⭐⭐⭐/5


*I received this book for free from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.*

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