The Ex Hex
- Author: Erin Sterling
- Genre: Romance
- Publication Date: September 28, 2021
- Publisher: HarperAudio
- Series: Ex Hex #1
CONTENT WARNING: profanity
Nine years ago, Vivienne Jones nursed her broken heart like any young witch would: vodka, weepy music, bubble baths…and a curse on the horrible boyfriend. Sure, Vivi knows she shouldn’t use her magic this way, but with only an “orchard hayride” scented candle on hand, she isn’t worried it will cause him anything more than a bad hair day or two.
That is until Rhys Penhallow, descendent of the town’s ancestors, breaker of hearts, and annoyingly just as gorgeous as he always was, returns to Graves Glen, Georgia. What should be a quick trip to recharge the town’s ley lines and make an appearance at the annual fall festival turns disastrously wrong. With one calamity after another striking Rhys, Vivi realizes her silly little Ex Hex may not have been so harmless after all.
Suddenly, Graves Glen is under attack from murderous wind-up toys, a pissed off ghost, and a talking cat with some interesting things to say. Vivi and Rhys have to ignore their off the charts chemistry to work together to save the town and find a way to break the break-up curse before it’s too late.
This was one of those super-hyped books during October, and I couldn’t resist jumping aboard the trend. I requested a copy of the audiobook mid-October, but it didn’t arrive until the beginning of November. Even though it was just after Halloween, I still jumped all over it, and enjoyed the hell out of this story!
There’s the perfect mix of humor, magic, witty banter, family dynamics, and spice that made this book irresistible. Vivienne is immediately likable, starting the book as a young witch dealing with a breakup and accidentally casting a terrible, drunken curse on the offending ex, along with using a wide range of creative profanities to refer to him. Her cousin and aunt are incredibly supportive of her.
Fast forward to nine years later, when Vivi is working as a professor and firmly over her ex. That is, until he shows up in her town just in time for Halloween to recharge the ley lines, and everything that can go wrong, does. Immediately. It was so fun to see how they interact, as well as how they interact with others in the community. I found myself laughing out loud so many times, even as the sexual tension between them practically crackled in my ears. The talking cat definitely got me, though — it’s kind of how I’d imagine my dogs would be if they could talk!
We also get to see things from the POV of Rhys as well, which made it even more absorbing. While Vivi’s family is incredibly supportive, warm, and open, the Penhallow family isn’t quite the same. They lean a bit more towards the dysfunctional side of things, which made it even more interesting to see how they interact and how Rhys connects with others.
There’s so much going on in this story, making it the perfect fun read for fall. There’s a mystery to solve, but it almost feels like background as Vivi and Rhys are forced to find a way to set their differences aside and work together to save the town. While I love enemies to lovers, I discovered that I absolutely ADORED the lovers to enemies to lovers vibe! Everything came together naturally, and the relationship didn’t feel forced in any way.
The pace kept me hooked, and was consistent. It never dragged, and made me want to keep listening long after I should have gone to sleep. The fact that the story was told from the POV of both Vivi and Rhys allowed me to see what was going on in each of their heads, so nothing came as too much of a surprise, and I could see how each of them grew and changed throughout the story. This was definitely the most fun book that I’ve read this fall, and I highly recommend it.
Categories: Book Review