Toil & Trouble by Tess Sharpe; Jessica Spotswood – #BOOKREVIEW

Anything about Witches… count me in and sign me up!

To say I loved this book is an understatement. A complete anthology with several stories of women bold enough to be who they are so completely that it’s nothing less than inspiring.

So many people feel like they don’t fit in, especially young women who are growing and learning how to be uniquely themselves, it’s not easy. If you have different ideas, thoughts and even an open mind, it can be construed as weird or freakish even.

Filled with 15 stories, this book encapsulates femininity and strength between the covers and it’s a fantastic read for adults but more so for the teenage girls who are busy trying to discover themselves at their core.

I loved it! Thank you Harlequin Teen, Tess Sharpe, Jessica Spotswood and Netgalley for the ARC!


Scorn the witch. Fear the witch. Burn the witch.

History is filled with stories of women accused of witchcraft, of fearsome girls with arcane knowledge. Toil & Trouble features fifteen stories of girls embracing their power, reclaiming their destinies and using their magic to create, to curse, to cure—and to kill.

A young witch uses social media to connect with her astrology clients—and with a NASA-loving girl as cute as she is skeptical. A priestess of death investigates a ritualized murder. A bruja who cures lovesickness might need the remedy herself when she falls in love with an altar boy. A theater production is turned upside down by a visiting churel. In Reconstruction-era Texas, a water witch uses her magic to survive the soldiers who have invaded her desert oasis. And in the near future, a group of girls accused of witchcraft must find their collective power in order to destroy their captors.

This collection reveals a universal truth: there’s nothing more powerful than a teenage girl who believes in herself.

Advance Praise

“At the heart of each [story] is a girl (or girls) learning to discover her power…The collective impact is undeniably resounding, and the particularly strong back half will leave readers more than a little bewitched themselves.” Booklist, starred review

“A short story collection that illustrates the multitudes of girlhood, womanhood, and magic…this powerful and diverse collection is perfect for fans of female-led fantasy stories. No damsels in distress to be found here.”Kirkus Reviews, starred review

About Tess Sharpe

I do not read my goodreads mail, but if you’d like to contact me the best way to reach me is through my website:

Born in a mountain cabin to a punk rocker mother, Tess Sharpe grew up in rural Northern California. She lives deep in the backwoods with a pack of dogs and a growing cabal of slightly feral cats. She is the author of Barbed Wire Heart, the critically-acclaimed YA novel, Far From You and The Evolution of Claire, a Jurassic World Prequel. 

She is also the co-editor, along with Jessica Spotswood, of Toil & Trouble, a feminist YA anthology about witches.

Website –

Twitter – sharpegirl

About Jessica Spotswood

Author. Editor. Feminist. Slytherpuff. 

I live in Washington, DC with my playwright husband, where I also work as a children’s library associate for the DC Public Library. 

If you’re interested in interviews or guest posts, please contact me at

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