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“Be Careful what you wish for . . .”

Olivia Kiskey should have remembered that. I mean really – she should have learned that particular lesson when standing on the magic linoleum square by booth nine at Crazy Cousin Betty’s Waffle House granted her wish. But again – be careful what you wish for. Like when she wished on the magic square for “a little more space” from her college boyfriend, Charlie. Two days later? Yep. He dumped her for his roommate – Neal. Sigh.

“A Little Night Magic” starts out funny, and Amanda Ronconi does a beautiful job of narration, her slightly nasal voice is completely believable as Olivia.

When Olivia decides she is finally going to give up her crush on Tobias the cook, sell the house her mother left her, and travel to Scotland, well, people really don’t know what to think. And when Olivia finds out that she can turn objects to animals, things get really whacky . . .

There are things I liked about A Little Night Magic. Olivia is a fun character – she has been stuck in a small town, working as a waitress, for years. As she says, “Spontaneity without commitment is just wishful thinking.” So, in six weeks, she is outta-there. Well, at least that is what she is planning. For a twenty-eight year old, she is very ‘young.’ So when Davina, a supposed ‘magical person’ shows up, and things start getting interesting, Olivia starts learning new things – the hard way. Davina is sure that Olivia is magical – and is determined to teach her. Hence, the whole ‘my coffee mug is now named Gibson’ thing. There are secrets, evil, a stranger chasing her – and the people she has known all her life are even stranger.

Then there are the things that could have been done much better. The give-and-take between Olivia and Tobias is aggravating, to say the least. Tobias is passive-aggressive, the people trying to ‘help’ her are more harmful than helpful, and Olivia’s innocence, in my opinion, is laid on a bit thick. This is a ‘fluffy’ book – which I really don’t mind at all – but Olivia’s ‘friends’ are spiteful and the mystery was figured out within the first couple of chapters, which really doesn’t work for me. The other thing that really disappointed me? The “Bad Guy” is truly evil. And yet, instead of doing something about it, or helping others with the ability do something about it, Olivia is a complete gutless weenie loser. I mean, come ON! You have the ability to stop a murderous megalomaniac – and yet you are too cowardly to stop that person?

So, Olivia pretty much ends up in the “too stupid to live” category, as others have said. And that is a shame, because the concept was good – it was the execution that let me down.

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