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February 12, 2016

WITCH'S MARKET by Mingmei Yip

Mingmei Yip

(from NightOwl Reviews)

 From the author of Secret of a Thousand Beauties and Peach Blossom Pavilion comes a beautifully written novel of self-discovery and intrigue. Chinese-American assistant professor Eileen Chen specializes in folk religion at her San Francisco college. Though her grandmother made her living as a shamaness, Eileen publicly dismisses witchcraft as mere superstition. Yet privately, the subject intrigues her. When a research project takes her to the Canary Islands—long rumored to be home to real witches—Eileen is struck by the lush beauty of Tenerife and its blend of Spanish and Moroccan culture. A stranger invites her to a local market where women sell amulets, charms, and love spells. Gradually Eileen immerses herself in her exotic surroundings, finding romance with a handsome young furniture maker. But as she learns more about the lives of these self-proclaimed witches, Eileen must choose how much trust to place in this new and seductive world, where love, greed, and vengeance can be as powerful, or as destructive, as any magic.
  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Kensington (November 24, 2015)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1617733237
  • ISBN-13: 978-1617733239

MINGMEI YIP was born in China and received her Ph.D. from the University of Paris, Sorbonne. She has written for major Hong Kong newspapers, and has appeared on many national and international television and radio programs. She immigrated to the United States in 1992, where she now lives in New York City with her husband. Her novels have been published in ten different languages and she is also an accomplished musician and calligrapher. Visit her at 

A teacher at a local college, Eileen Chen is Chinese American.  She knows a lot about folk religion. She decides to leave her teaching job and go to the Canary Islands to do some research in Shamanism and witchcraft.Her grandmother has passed down the gift of sight and has been making her live as a shaman. The Canary Islands is a land full of magic and Eileen Chen finds herself smack dab in the middle of a mystery. Eileen has a mystery man interested in her.  Who is he and what does he want?  Then we have witches with lots of spells ready to cast. Often times we think we have put the past in the past and yet it pops up once again.  Why?  Does it have a meaning or just by accident? I had a hard time with the book.  The manner of speech just didn't fit the setting or the characters.  Eileen being a witch is learning that the Chinese magic along with the Western witchcraft have a connection although they are quite different. As she finds out these things, her witchcraft grows, especially her power of sight. I just wished it had been a little more in step with reality.  I love books on witches and witchcraft, but I just couldn't relate to the characters. 

I received a complimentary copy of the book from the author, Mingmei Yip and NightOwl Reviews for my unbiased review.  No other compensation took place.

I would give this book 3  STARS.


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