Half Bad by Sally Green

Wanted by no one.
Hunted by everyone.

Sixteen-year-old Nathan lives in a cage: beaten, shackled, trained to kill. In a modern-day England where two warring factions of witches live amongst humans, Nathan is an abomination, the illegitimate son of the world’s most terrifying and violent witch, Marcus. Nathan’s only hope for survival is to escape his captors, track down Marcus, and receive the three gifts that will bring him into his own magical powers—before it’s too late. But how can Nathan find his father when there is no one safe to trust, not even family, not even the girl he loves?

Half Bad is an international sensation and the start of a brilliant trilogy: a gripping tale of alienation and the indomitable will to survive.

This was my second attempt to read this and I’m glad I finished it!

When I read it the first time, I was stumped by the second person point of view. After a year or so, I picked it up again, prepared for the shock and it was such an addictive read!

The story starts with Nathan as a 16-year-old in a cage, and subsequently tells us how and why he got himself in that condition. It is a story of magic, strength, family, trust and betrayal.

There were fragments of his past, here and there and they were amazing. I’m not inclined towards action and even though Half Bad had a good amount of action, I enjoyed it to the fullest!

Magic isn’t portrayed as wand/hand waving with sparks flying off the tips and it is something that can’t be learned. Magic is through blood and Gift, which a Witch, Black or White, acquires when he/she turns 17. And there are so many of them! I really like this idea and this new world and it clearly shows that Witches aren’t going to take their abilities and gifts for granted. I really liked it.

There is no perfect definition of “good” and “evil”, but according the White Witches, they’re the “Good” ones and the Black Witches are “Evil”. But Nathan’s half and half. Is he evil? Is he good?

This is what we look forward to in its sequels Half Wild and Half Lost! I’m excited!


Rating: 3.75/5

Recommendation: If you love magic and fantasy and new worlds, then this is definitely for you!

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