Published February 9th, 2016 by Ballantine Books
Amandine Bisset has always had the power to feel the emotions of those around her. It s a secret she can share only with her friends all professors, all witches when they gather for the Cambridge University Society of Literature and Witchcraft. Amandine treasures these meetings but lately senses the ties among her colleagues beginning to unravel. If only she had her student Noa s power to hear the innermost thoughts of others, she might know how to patch things up. Unfortunately, Noa regards her gift as a curse. So when a seductive artist claims he can cure her, Noa jumps at the chance, no matter the cost.
Noa s not the only witch in over her head. Mathematics professor Kat has a serious case of unrequited love but refuses to cast spells to win anyone s heart. Her sister, Cosima, is not above using magic to get what she wants, sprinkling pastries in her bakery with equal parts sugar and enchantment. But when Cosima sets her sights on Kat s crush, she conjures up a dangerous love triangle.
I love that the story is told about characters from different characters points of view. The world these witches lived in was so normal, not witch like, that it was easy to fall into the story and picture what was happening. While each character had their own story the entire book was the story of all 6 main characters together. I found it easy to follow the story and easy to relate to the characters.
The witchcraft was not so out of there that it was crazy. It was more quirky than magical and I found myself wanting to know more about their special gifts. I enjoyed learning about each characters special skills and anticipating how it would affect the story and their lives.
Noa was the character that I wanted to be best friends with. Maybe because I felt like she was young, hip, and in need of a good friend that isn’t put off by her gift. I felt sorry that her gift was so hard on her that she actually wished it away.
This is not my first Menna van Praag book and it certainly will not be my last. I recommend checking it out. I devoured it and cannot wait to tell my friends about it.
See my review of The Dress Shop of Dreams by Menna van Praag HERE
Praise for Menna van Praag’s The Dress Shop of Dreams
“Van Praag’s latest is filled with magic, love and the bonds of family. The writing is thoroughly engaging
and will whisk readers away to a place where anything is possible. Detailed, likable characters and a
swift-moving plot combine for a wonderful reading experience.”
—Romantic Times Reviews, TOP PICK
“A brightly colored fabulist confection… sure to delight those looking for a little fairy dust in their romance.” —Kirkus
“A delightful blending of many love stories plus a tale of murder and suspense. Van Praag has a knack for balancing a large cast ofengaging characters, and her references to beloved authors and historic scientists are enjoyable touchstones between doses ofmystery and magic.”
Praise for Menna van Praag
“Reminiscent of Love Actually and P.S. I Love You, this cute little book is recommended to readers who want to be charmed by the possibilities of love.”
—Adrienne Cruz, Azusa City Library on The Dress Shop of Dreams
“The Dress Shop of Dreams is a light, sweet and shimmering confection, well worth a read.”
“Dreams, dresses, magic, and mystery swirl in this enchanting novel. The Dress Shop of Dreams is the book to read before turning off your bedside light.
—Nancy Thayer, New York Times bestselling author of An Island Christmas
“Big-hearted, beautiful and brushed with magic, this novel celebrates life's moments of joy, possibility and transformation. Menna van Praag's writing is bright with sparkles and lovely grace notes.”
—Susan Wiggs, bestselling author of The Beekeeper’s Ball on The Dress Shop of Dreams
“The Dress Shop of Dreams is a dream come true for lovers of romantic tales with a twist of fantasy. Utterly enchanting! Menna van Praag’s imaginative, endearing characters will stay with you long after you close the book.”
—Mary Alice Monroe, New York Times bestselling author of The Summer Wind
"Beguiling and bright...delights with deft writing and charming characters."
—Kirkus Reviews, on The House at the End of Hope Street
"Van Praag's fairytale first novel features a house that can change one's life. . . .
Fans of Alice Hoffman and Sarah Addison Allen should like."
—Library Journal, on The House at the End of Hope Street
“Van Praag’s writing is bright and hopeful. . . . A delightful and engaging read [for] fans of Jasper Fforde, Gloria Naylor, or Sarah Addison Allen will especially appreciate this story as a celebration of feminine strength and accomplished women through the ages.”
—Booklist (STARRED Review), on The House at the End of Hope Street