By: Melanie | July 15, 2013 | (11) Comments

Review: Banish by Nicola MarshBanish by Nicola Marsh
Publisher: Harlequin Australia
Release Date: August 1, 2013
Genres: Paranormal, Romance, YA
Pages: 272
Source: Received in exchange for review
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Alyssa has one week to destroy her enemy, save her spirit... and save her soul.

After her ex-boyfriend commits suicide and her mum’s alcoholism sparks yet another psychotic episode, seventeen-year-old Alyssa Wood flees her small hometown of Broadwater and heads to New York City to stay with her bohemian aunt — a Wicca High Priestess.

Alyssa revels in the anonymity of a big city and her new life. Her grades climb, she has a new best friend, and a new guy: the sexy geek Ronan — a saxophone player who prefers jazz to pop.

But her newfound peace is soon shattered when she sees a dead body in one of Ronan’s music clips — and she’s the only one who can see it. Worse still, Alyssa recognises the body that has been murdered a week forward!

Alyssa doesn’t believe in the supernatural...despite her family’s Wicca background. So how will she overcome evil when it’s closer than she thinks?

My Review

‘A doll that looked remarkably like me. With a hangman’s noose around it’s neck.’

Despite the colourful mix of genres, Banish was not quite the entertaining read I was in search for. A little dark and light, mysterious and fun, the romance and movement of this novel was lacking. Admittedly, I skimmed the last half, maybe partially due to my headed-ness, but on whole, the last half became predictable and inadequate.

In hope to get away from the craziness at home, like her mother’s psychotic episodes and death of her ex-boyfriend, Alyssa Wood flees to New York where her aunt resides, who also happens to be a Wicca High Priestess. A new attempt of normal life with a new best friend, Seth, and boyfriend, Ronan, is immediately fragmented when she sees a dead corpse on a music video clip from Ronan sent. Frightened yet curious, Alyssa searches for answers and become confronted with more and more supernaturals. Completely confused, she only knows one thing for sure, someone is following her.

Surprisingly, the main character was not one of the contributing factors of my slight distaste with Banish. Alyssa was a cautious protagonist and had a discerning eye which was complimentary to the plot as sang murder mystery despite the paranormal aspects. While she had a traumatising and terrifying past with her closest relationships, she was strong and didn’t take crap from anyone. I loved how Alyssa was a cogent character without bordering artificial. An easy character to relate and sympathise for.

However, the romance was an aspect that did exceed realism and into ingenuity. The romance clearly has been tampered along before entering the story as it kicked off promptly at the beginning of Banish. Nonetheless, I appreciated the two interests as individuals. Ronan, like Alyssa was indubitably authentic and had a considerate personality. However when placed together, I couldn’t sense a chemistry spark at all, rather too forced.

Okay, now just one little more qualm. I feel like a broken record when I say this but where is the world building? While Banish was a murder mystery, a paranormal witchery element was present which I found missing depth and more understanding for us readers.

All in all, Banish had numerous fantastic points but lacked in certain areas like worldbuilding and realism in romance. Unfortunately, while pretty entertaining, Banish were irritatingly forgetable.

~Thank you Harlequin Australia for the copy!~
3 Stars
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Owner (and crazy nut) at YA Midnight Reads
Melanie is one of the totally fabulous bloggers at YA Midnight Reads. She's a 16 year old student from Melbourne, Australia. She is normally found binge watching TV series, reading , blogging, procrastinating or fangirling about how Percabeth is the best ship ever. She's also a lover of caps lock and uses it excessively.

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11 Responses to Review: Banish by Nicola Marsh

  1. Faye M. says:

    Aww, sorry to see you didn’t love this one as much. I hate it when the worldbuilding is lacking, especially if it’s a genre that’s not contemporary. I mean, at least there has to be enough information to back everything up. The cover looks so lovely, though… but what a shame 🙂

    Great review!

    Faye @ The Social Potato

  2. Oh, that’s a shame, Melanie! It has such a great premise, but if the world-building is lacking and romance is lackluster…well, I think I’d struggle with it. Still, it’s intriguing. Wonderful honest review!

  3. Amelia K says:

    That’s such a pretty cover- it’s a bummer to see that it wasn’t THAT good. But I’m still interested as I like the sound of Alyssa.

    Fantastic review.

  4. I hate underdeveloped worlds especially how this one sounds so interesting. I hope your next read is better! Brilliant review as usual, Mel!

  5. Amy says:

    I hadn’t heard of this one. The premise sounds good, but it seems like between the lack of world building, and a not so great romance this wouldn’t be one I would love. Great review hon!!

  6. Huh this one is new to me but I don’t think I will be adding it to my TBR. Alyssa sounds like a really good MC but I think the romance would drive me insane. Happy that you were able to enjoy this one overall though!

  7. I love the cover, the colors are really pretty, but I don’t think that’s enough to make me pick this one up. And to me, there is just no point in a romance if there is no spark there! Great review though 🙂

  8. sshah605 says:

    I love witchy books! Sad, that you didn’t like this one. I might still give it a try but after reading your review I don’t think I am gonna like it any better than you did !
    Thanks for the review !

    – Gayatri @ Notorious Writer.

  9. Oh I can’t wait to read this. I read a few pages and got a bit overwhelmed with the writing style – seemed really slang O_O

    At least the MC sounds believable, which will make it easier for me to read!

    Insightful review, hope I enjoy this :3
    Jaz @ Fiction in Fiction in Fiction recently posted…15 Day Book Blogger Challenge: Day 6My Profile

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