Book Reviews

Review: The Spellshop by Sarah Beth Durst

Coming at you all my cozy fantasy lovers! The Spellshop is cozy fantasy perfection. The Spellshop stole my entire heart. I wasn’t even done and I knew it was going to be one of my favorites this year! Keep reading this book review of The Spellshop for my full thoughts.


Kiela has always had trouble dealing with people. Thankfully, as a librarian at the Great Library of Alyssium, she and her assistant, Caz—a magically sentient spider plant—have spent the last decade sequestered among the empire’s most precious spellbooks, preserving their magic for the city’s elite.

When a revolution begins and the library goes up in flames, she and Caz flee with all the spellbooks they can carry and head to a remote island Kiela never thought she’d see again: her childhood home. Taking refuge there, Kiela discovers, much to her dismay, a nosy—and very handsome—neighbor who can’t take a hint and keeps showing up day after day to make sure she’s fed and to help fix up her new home.

In need of income, Kiela identifies something that even the bakery in town doesn’t have: jam. With the help of an old recipe book her parents left her and a bit of illegal magic, her cottage garden is soon covered in ripe berries.

But magic can do more than make life a little sweeter, so Kiela risks the consequences of using unsanctioned spells and opens the island’s first-ever and much needed secret spellshop.


(Disclaimer: I received this book from the publisher. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.)

We love a librarian main character! But even more so, we love a character who has to evaluate what home means. How we can find pieces of home, a community, and memories. We don’t have to have this idea that to move forwards means we never go back. That we have to burn bridges and can never change our mind. We can open up closed windows and knock on doors. The Spellshop is a charming and tender story about choosing what kind of person we want to be. What we want to stand for.

(Caitlin Davies does a great job at infusing this cozy feeling. There’s nothing better than listening to an audiobook of a story you can immerse yourself into. I also love the touches for Caz in the narration!)

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Scarred by her escape, Kiela struggles to process this new village which holds secrets of her own past. It reminds her of where her parents left and the memories she had with them. The Spellshop examines and explores the price of knowledge. What will we do when we see the consequences of our choices? Can we still try to make it right? It’s a book that forces Kiela to question if she belongs there. What would belonging look like. It feels cozy as we see her make a home, adjust to these new conditions, and focus on how to rebuild.

Find The Spellshop on Goodreads, Storygraph, Amazon,, Blackwells, & Libro. fm.


What is your most anticipated cozy fantasy book?

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