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Summary

Let's get one thing straight - Ivy Wilde is not a heroine. In fact she's probably the last witch in the world you'd call if you needed a magical helping hand, regardless of her actual abilities. If it were down to Ivy, she'd spend all day every day on her sofa, where she could watch TV, munch junk food, and talk to her feline familiar to her heart's content.

However, when a bureaucratic disaster ends up with Ivy as the victim of a case of mistaken identity, she's yanked very unwillingly into Arcane Branch, the investigative department of the Hallowed Order of Magical Enlightenment. Her problems are quadrupled when a valuable object is stolen right from under the Order's noses.

It doesn't exactly help that she's been magically bound to Adeptus Exemptus Raphael Winter. He might have piercing sapphire eyes and a body a cover model would be proud of, but as far as Ivy's concerned, he's a walking advertisement for the joyless perils of too much witch work.

And if he makes her go to the gym again, she's definitely going to turn him into a frog.

©2017 Helen Harper (P)2017 Tantor

What members say

Average customer ratings

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  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Great story, eccentric narration

Is there anything you would change about this book?

The book is great, I loved the down to earth language and behaviours of the characters. Ivy is very "normal", Helen Harper hasn't fallen into the pervasive trap in fantasy literature of making her heroine super-good or special. Although she is a very talented witch, she is also very easy to relate to.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Brutus, every cat owner can appreciate his stubborn determination to get what he wants.

How could the performance have been better?

The narration is eccentric to say the least. A book set in England, with English characters narrated by someone with an American accent. The book is written in the first person so Ivy is portrayed with a US accent, even though her language is very British. (e,g, plonker, bloody hell etc). It jars when listening to it. Tanya's character accents are a bit hit and miss, some are good, but there are a few Dick Van Dyke moments with some attempts at British regional accents.
If you are American, imagine a book set in New York, with New York characters being narrated by someone with a Received English accent. It's perfectly understandable, but just doesn't sound right.

Any additional comments?

Once I managed to get passed the US accent using British vernacular, it was very enjoyable and will definitely be getting the next ones in the series.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Disappointing

Would you be willing to try another book from Helen Harper? Why or why not?

I have enjoyed other books by Helen Harper

What didn’t you like about Tanya Eby’s performance?

Tanya Eby is American, not good at English accents or pronumciation, and a bad choice for a voicing character who uses so many English idioms that she must be English, nor for narrating a book that has such a very English setting.

What character would you cut from Slouch Witch?

Winter - he's a bully who willingly gives his loyalty to a corrupt organization headed by a man who openly blackmails people to get his own way, yet he's cast as the love-interest for the female protagonist.

Any additional comments?

Unfortunately, hackneyed but sadly pervasive (in paranormal fiction) trope of Girl thrown into position of being stuck working with handsome, powerful, overbearingly arrogant Man ends up falling for him instead of finding a way of slapping him down so hard he can't get back up.The amusing writing style and reasonably good plot, unfortunately, aren't enough to save this one from the offputting and irritating romance element.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Erm..

Liked the book. Hated the narration. The accent is all wrong for an English story, set in (the clue is in the word) England!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Hated the narration, it was so annoying

I wanted to like this but the narration was so off putting. It done my head in and I kept tuning out. A very frustrating listen for me, and I don't think I fully absorbed the story as I was so annoyed by the narration. I think if you changed the narrator I'd actually enjoy it

She had a dodgy American / robotic accent and drawn out pronunciation. I don't know if she was trying to add dramatic suspense but it was plain awful.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

A fun urban fantasy

I really enjoyed this. The story was interesting and kept me intrigued to the very last page. I'm excited to see where the series goes.
The only issue I had was with the narrator. Having an American read clearly English slang was so cringeworthy. But it didn't take away from the story.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Jan
  • United Kingdom
  • 28-01-18

excellent

Really enjoyed listening to this book. good story line, humorous i am so glad I bought this. i am not a big fan of Tanya Eby when she narrates the Fools gold series by Susan Mallery but she is excellent reading this. It is a lesson not to write a book off because of the narrator in future I will read the hard copy too before giving up on a book.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Gillian
  • Basildon, United Kingdom
  • 14-12-17

Thoroughly Enjoyable Listen

Loved the characters, especially the main ones and it was expertly narrated. Can't wait to listen to the next in the series.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

slouch witch

really enjoyed this book looking forward to reading the next book, makes you laugh out loud in some parts,

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Interesting twist

Really enjoyed listening to a well narrated
Well written, wonderful twist on a magic thriller

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Great story and characters - slightly dodgy narration.

This is my first Helen Harper book and I've been avoiding this one for a while. The main reason being the title. It sounded to me like it had been dumbed down and for some reason it really irritated me - enough to keep passing it over. I've also passed over Helen Harper's previous audiobooks because of the narration. Having listened to the samples of previous books narrated by Saskia Maarleveld I just couldn't cope with an urban fantasy heroine with a clipped upper crust British accent. I know it's because I've listened to so many other urban fantasy books set in the U.S. with American narrators and it might sound a bit shallow. I feel I should be supporting British writers and narrators but I personally just didn't enjoy the narration so I couldn't warm to the main character or get absorbed in the story. So despite Tanya Eby's American accent sounding a bit weird narrating obviously British dialogue and idioms it's what actually tempted me to spend a credit on this one. And I'm so glad I did. It was a great story that was well paced and it was nice to hear some of our unique British humour. I absolutely loved the cat, Brutus. I'll certainly carry on with this series and maybe even try some of the previous books in paperback. My only criticism is again with some of the accents. The voice for main male character - Winter- who is supposed to become the love interest, sounds to me like a 45yr old banker. Despite him being written as a fit and attractive, if uptight guy, my imagination just cannot conjure up "sexy" because of the narrators take on his voice. However, I don't want to sound too negative. I enjoyed the book and would recommend it to anyone looking for a good urban fantasy. It's great to read something in this genre with a distinctly British flavour to it. I just wish the publisher with the audio rights to Helen Harper's books would find a British narrator with moderate and likeable accent that would bring t

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • christa
  • 06-08-17

Awesome book!!!

I just finished this book and I really enjoyed it. The main character is funny, smart and a blast to listen to. The mystery is good and not easy to figure out and the story is light and entertaining. While I had reservations about the narrator initially because her voice sounded a little older than I expected she really made the character and after listening for a short time it was no longer an issue. She delivered the lines expertly and really seemed to get the snark and mood of the story and how it should be read.I have been looking for a book that will hold my attention and it has been hard to find a new series. This book was well written and I cannot wait until the next book comes out. If you like funny out going lead women with a touch of laziness and you have had enough of long drawn out sex scenes this is a great book for you.

14 of 14 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Erin Walsh
  • 02-08-17

Best Impulse Buy in Ages

I bought this after the audio sample had me hooked, and I do not regret it one bit. Tanya Eby does such a great job bringing these characters to life, although her lack of English accent for the main character and narrator is a little offputting since the book takes place in Oxford, England and all of the characters are English (I assume she's American and didn't want to use a fake accent for the entire novel). Nevertheless, she brings a great amount of emotion to every word, and it's honestly one of the best audiobook performances I've ever heard.

The story is a solid mystery packed with world building and some decent red herrings. It's a good opener for a series, and I look forward to the next book, which I'm going to buy immediately after finishing this review.

If you enjoyed Kim Harrison's Hollows series with Rachel Morgan, definitely give this a try. I'm always looking for good urban fantasy starring lady magic users, and this was a great addition to my collection.

12 of 12 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Jessica
  • 06-08-17

Amazing story, disappointing narration

I ended up returning this book because of the narration. I read the book and loved it so much I purchased the audio book shorty thereafter. That was a mistake. No one in their right mind would ever think "plonker" should be said with an American accent. There is an entire country of people who could have narrated this book authentically; they choose an American who couldn't. Do yourself a favor and read this one.

19 of 21 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Abby
  • 28-07-17

Worth It

Admittedly, I thought almost immediately that I wouldn't finish this audio book because I had a hard time getting used to Tanya's reading style, but I plugged along since this is how I pass the hours at my office job. I am SO glad I did. The story is rather simple, but incredibly enjoyable and the characters are just my cup of tea. And honestly, after finishing it, I don't think I could think of Ivy with any other voice. Really worth a listen.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Jen N
  • 01-10-17

A great listen!

I've been having a slump with audiobooks as of late. This audiobook took me by complete surprise! The story is quite intriguing and keeps you pretty engaged. If you are an Ilona Andrews fan, you'll like this story!! There's a good romance, mystery, and fantasy factor to the storyline. Love the quirky personality of the main character! And kudos to Tanya Eby for narrating the story. She did a great job of narrating, with the exception of some minor changes in dialect. But don't get me wrong, I might just be "reading" too much into it.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Kim
  • 16-08-17

Better than expected

I love Helen harpers books but I was unsure of this one. I shouldn't have been. It's clever, fun, and the characters are well done. The narration is a bit annoying since it was written for a British accent - some terms are defiantly British but with an American accent i was thrown off a bit.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Stephanie Diane
  • 06-10-17

Arg!

I absolutely loved this book, but how are you gonna leave us with an ending like that Mrs Harper!? 😳😬 killing me! Can’t wait to read/listen to book 2! Mrs Eby made all the different peoples voice recognizable as different and fun!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Ann
  • 05-10-17

Fun read

Ivy, Brutus, Rafe and the other characters in this story are just a lot of fun. Ivy is lazy, Rafe is fast paced/work dedicated and Brutus just wants to feed. Love Tanya Eby and enjoyed listening to her read this series. Yeah, could have had a Brit do it (does take place in England) but Tanya has a fun way of presenting Ivy that I liked.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Kerri J.
  • 30-09-17

Favorite New Series

For some time, I hesitated to start this series, despite my love for other Helen Harper series (for no other reason than I just haven't been into witches lately), but I am so glad I finally did!
I was at first also just a bit put off by the narrator's voice, primarily because it was not what I've come to expect; I suppose I automatically associate Helen Harper stories with Saskia Maarleveld, whom I love. I soon came to realize my first impression was unnecessarily critical, and I think Tanya Eby did a fantastic job!

I am still a little curious as to why the main character has an American accent, though the story is set in England; the narrator is American, too, but she gives all the other characters British accents well enough. Nevertheless, I do think the voice the narrator gave the main character works quite well for her personality.

Ivy Wilde is utterly charming, with her lighthearted, easy-going nature, her careless, self-deprecating and snarky humor, and her penchant for putting forth the absolute minimum of effort. A perfect foil, the stolid and sober Winter is alternately annoyed, exasperated, and charmed by her. There are several endearing side characters, as well, perhaps the best being Ivy's Familiar, Brutus. Overall, the story is a humorous and fun adventure.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • C. Klapper
  • 10-09-17

So good! Funny and fun.

Highly recommend this one for anyone looking for a light mystery with a main character I can seriously relate to. Add a bunch of magic and a hot partner and you've got....well, magic!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful