“That night, everybody lost something. Not everybody noticed.”
After the town’s summer party, which consisted of loud music, a bonfire, alcohol, and camping in a field, teenagers start realising things are going missing… but some things are being found too, like diary pages and an ancient spellbook that should not be messed with.
I picked Spellbook of The Lost and Found up from my local library – the cover caught my eye, aswell as the title itself. For some reason I never have too much faith in books I borrow that I’ve not heard of before, even though time and time again these books have proved to me why I should. This is another of those times, I was hooked from the prologue onwards.
I need to address first that I was really pleasantly surprised when I found out this book includes LGBT+ characters (specifically bi and lesbian), and also a character who is deaf in one ear and uses a hearing aid.
In each of the 3 groups, there’s a main character (Olive, Laurel, and Hazel) – and it’s those girls who tell the story, and I could easily tell who’s who. Where I struggled slightly was telling the other characters apart, I felt like I could’ve done with knowing a bit more about each of them so I could distinguish them easier, though it did get easier the further along I got. Another thing I thought was a bit confusing was the format in which Olive and Rose text eachother, reading between all of the STOP‘s wasn’t the most fun thing to do.
I really enjoyed when a new chapter would begin and there would be a list of things Lost/Found. I loved the pages that contained the Spell itself. Both the friendships and the romances were done so well, and I was definitely rooting for the lovebirds.
It was lovely seeing Olive and her sister Emily bonding over feminism and poetry (and the reference to Dobby when Olive gave Emily a pair of socks). The parts where Olive’s mum and grandma would say something oddly relevant to the bizzare events going on were quite unsettling – did Olive mishear what they said or are they somehow aware of what’s happening?
Throughout this book, the characters lives all perfectly weaved together through so many wonderful coincidences, and every event slotted together so flawlessly, which I was seriously impressed by. I loved when Olive and Rowan (Hazel’s brother) met and the chapters started combining those two groups. Ever since Jude was introduced, I kept trying to figure out details about him and his mysterious ways!
The big reveal near the end was perfect. I did have an inkling about it but I doubted myself each time. I was really glad when it actually came to light and despite the fact I already sort of guessed it, I was still quite speechless.
I’m giving Spellbook of The Lost and Found a rather high 4 stars. It’s almost 400 pages but it flowed really well and certainly didn’t feel that long, and was just a fantastic book all round. I will give a trigger warning for r*pe – it’s not explicitly mentioned nor is there anything graphic, but it is brought up a few times and is upsetting.