Burn mark by Laura Powell
Bloomsbury, 2012. ISBN 9781408815229.
(Age: 13+) Glory comes from a family of witches. She is determined to renew the magic in her London East End coven and to get away from the petty crooks in her family. Lucas Sterne is the privileged son of The Chief Prosecutor for the Inquisition and expected to follow in his ancestors' footprints, sworn to rid the world of illegal witches. When Glory and Lucas come together as unlikely allies, things begin to smoulder.
Powell has developed an unusual and original world. Her story is set in contemporary London, but a London where witchcraft is still part of the world and where an Inquisition has been set up to find and to burn anyone who is using witchcraft illegally. Glory comes from an East End family of criminals and finds herself in trouble when she develops the Fae, the mark of the witch. Lucas Sterne comes from an upper class, rich Inquisitor family and is shocked when he too develops the mark of the Fae and its attendant powers. Their backgrounds and attitudes are very different and it is difficult for the pair to understand each other, but they must work together to outwit their enemies.
Powell packed a very powerful and memorable punch with her Prologue, a terrifying description of a witch burning and the continuing action and suspense kept me turning the pages. The details about the crime families, witchcraft and inquisitors were all so well written that it was easy to suspend belief and become immersed in a parallel London where magic really happened.
This interesting take on witches, witch burning and the Inquisition, all in a modern setting, will appeal to teens. To learn more about the author of Burn Mark, see Laura Powell's site. A trailer is also available .