Thursday 16 February 2023


Summer 1987: Mark Prewitt’s only priority is to avoid his dad’s new wife and waste time with his friends, but idle nights are the devil’s playground. When his friends decide to pull a cruel prank on the reclusive and strange Farrow sisters, Mark regrets caving in to peer pressure.

Wanting to make amends, Mark is drawn into the mysterious world of the Farrow girls, finding a kindred spirit in the middle sister, George. She is unlike anyone he’s ever known; a practicing witch who uses folk magic to protect her family. They bond over books, loneliness, and homemade spells. She even invites Mark to join a séance to contact her dead sister, who died under mysterious circumstances.

Keeping their relationship secret, Mark learns that living a double life in a town this small is impossible. When the secret is exposed, and his friends plot to punish the witch sisters for stealing one of their own, Mark is forced to choose between these two worlds.

I've had my eye on this book for a while, so I want to thank Erin Al-Mehairi and Raw Dog Screaming Press for sending me a copy.

It's the summer of 1987. Mark Prewitt is trying to enjoy the long, hot and very boring days with his two buddies while working two jobs. But when one of the weird and mysterious Farrow sisters catches his eye, he finds himself falling into their strange and violent world. Something no one is happy about...

Well, this turned out to be an awesome and intriguing book! Not just because it captures the nostalgia of the 1980s so well, but because the tale of newfound love and deteriorating friendships is universal.

The story is told by Mark. A teenager who lost his mother and is now trying to get used to the fact his father remarried. A much younger woman. He's also caught in the middle of a dangerous friendship he should have left years ago, and another that's too flimsy to matter. But there's also the personal need to become the same person he is inside and out. He sure has an inner battle with himself, and usually ends up saying the wrong thing. Or the opposite of what he wants to say. And that always leads him to trouble.

Sometimes, it's hard to like him but his narrative is always interesting. And addictive. He has a knack for taking the reader on a rocky, but interesting ride through a town with too many prejudices.

There's a LOT to like about this book. The characters all felt real in their own different ways. Starting with his hot-head of a father, his very patient stepmother, and everyone else in between. The kindness and cruelty metre sure takes a beating with these characters. But I especially liked how Mark's interest in George Farrow develops. The way his curiosity starts slowly but quickly escalates into romantic territory, leading to an explosive conclusion and a twist I didn't see coming.

Wasps in the Ice Cream is a fantastic story that hooked me in from start to finish, and truly felt like it belonged in the 80s. All the sharp edges of that turbulent time are portrayed in a raw and gritty way that kept me glued to every page. There's an uncomfortable truth about the people who live in this town, one that kept the tension simmering beneath until everything boils over.

Also, that ending was perfect.

I loved this, and highly recommend it!

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