ARC review, audiobook, book review, young adult

Hocus Pocus & The All-New Sequel by A.W. Jantha (ARC Review)

Title: Hocus Pocus & The All-New Sequel
Author: A.W. Jantha
Type: Fiction
Genre: YA, Fantasy, Paranormal, Witches, Halloween
Publisher: Freeform (Disney Publishing)
Date published: July 10, 2018

A physical copy of this book was kindly provided by Indigo Books & Music Inc. in exchange for an honest review.

Hocus Pocus is beloved by Halloween enthusiasts all over the world. Diving once more into the world of witches, this electrifying two-part young adult novel, released on the twenty-fifth anniversary of the 1993 film, marks a new era of Hocus Pocus. Fans will be spellbound by a fresh retelling of the original film, followed by the all-new sequel that continues the story with the next generation of Salem teens.

Shortly after moving from California to Salem, Massachusetts, Max Dennison finds himself in hot water when he accidentally releases a coven of witches, the Sanderson sisters, from the afterlife. Max, his sister, and his new friends (human and otherwise) must find a way to stop the witches from carrying out their evil plan and remaining on earth to torment Salem for all eternity.

Twenty-five years later, Max and Allison’s seventeen-year-old daughter, Poppy, finds herself face-to-face with the Sanderson sisters in all their sinister glory. When Halloween celebrations don’t quite go as planned, it’s a race against time as Poppy and her friends fight to save her family and all of Salem from the witches’ latest death-defying scheme.

Raphy transparent super smallcroppedRaphy transparent super smallcroppedRaphy transparent super smallcroppedRaphy transparent super smallcropped

When I heard that a sequel would be written for my favourite Halloween movie, Hocus Pocus, I absolutely knew that I had to read it! And, although this book came out in July, I managed to get an ARC from Indigo Books & Music Inc. (thank you!) close to Halloween, and naturally started reading it then. I read the first part of the book (the literary version of Hocus Pocus) first and before re-watching the movie version the way that I do every year. It was a lot of fun to experience this enjoyable story in book format, and I had a smile on my face most of the time because I was able to enjoy some of my favourite Hocus Pocus moments through words, and with the option to take as much time as I wanted with each scene. I also audiobooked some of the chapters from this entire book (the first portion included), and found that the narrator did a good job except for the parts where characters sang. She sang/chanted the songs wrong, as if she had never seen the movie before. So, overall, while I did have fun with reading the book version of the story, and would definitely recommend it to kids and adults who prefer reading to watching movies and TV shows, I personally prefer the film version better (and I will continue my tradition of re-watching the movie every Halloween).

There have been discussions regarding a Hocus Pocus sequel for some years, and I never quite knew what to imagine when trying to think of what it might be like. I feel like there were a lot of options to go with. But, I’m glad that the author decided to continue the story in Salem, and to feature most of the characters from the original story! The Hocus Pocus sequel focuses on Max and Allison’s daughter, Poppy, her best friend, and her newest friend and crush, and how it’s their turn to defeat the Sanderson sisters when they return. I’m happy that the Sanderson sisters were brought back, since they’re one of the big reasons that I enjoy the original movie so much, and the author kept them very in-character for this story. I think that this story made for a good continuation to the original, and I had a lot of fun reading it (even though I wasn’t as into it as the original story). I hope that they will turn this into a movie as well (which I think I might enjoy even more), and that the story will continue (while staying true to the original tale, as this sequel has done). Overall, I do recommend this book to long-time fans like myself, as well as those who would like to experience the story for the first time in book format, those who would like to read the story before watching the movie, or those who simply don’t like to watch movies but want to know what all the fuss is about!


1 thought on “Hocus Pocus & The All-New Sequel by A.W. Jantha (ARC Review)

Leave a Comment