REVIEW: Hollywood Witch Hunter by Valerie Tejeda

Hollywood Witch Hunter 01

Title: Hollywood Witch Hunter
Author: Valerie Tejeda
Format: E-ARC
Publication: July 20th 2015 by Bloomsbury Spark
Source: Publisher via Netgalley (thank you Lynn Stevens, Bloomsbury Spark and Netgalley!)
Genre: Fiction—Contemporary, Paranormal, Urban Fantasy, Young Adult
Other keywords: Witchcraft and Wizardry

Goodreads | Amazon

Synopsis

From the moment she first learned the truth about witches…she knew she was born to fight them.

Now, at sixteen, Iris is the lone girl on the Witch Hunters Special Ops Team.

But when Iris meets a boy named Arlo, he might just be the key to preventing an evil uprising in Southern California.

Together they’re ready to protect the human race at all costs. Because that’s what witch hunters do.

Welcome to Hollywood.

Review

I received a review copy from the publisher which in no way swayed my opinion about the work.

Hollywood Witch Hunter could’ve taken either of two roads: a clever satire on celebrity culture masked as a gory witch hunt or a fast-paced, kick-ass witch hunt that embraces its ridiculousness. Sadly, however, it took neither.

Across the globe, Witch Hunters have kept witches at bay. Witches who pry on unsuspecting humans. But in Los Angeles, it is quite different; witches go after shallow, spoiled brats. But with the Bentlys in command, the City of Angel is safe. Until it no longer is. Things are getting weirder and a powerful witch is gaining more powers. At the center of it is Iris Maria Bently, the only female Hunter ever. And with her brother and a new recruit named Arlo by her side, she’s determined to take matters into her hands. After all, she knows she’s born to be a Hunter. As someone who grew up in a household that watches dubbed Latino soap operas, I was thrilled to find a female Colombian MC. Tejeda’s representation and feminist references are this debut’s strongest suits. Unfortunately, that’s all there is for me. A couple of chapters in and everything went downhill.

“People aren’t born monsters, Iris. Something always happens that makes them that way.”

This one’s a light read, but my biggest concern is Iris. I didn’t connect with her. She’s irresolute at best, whiny at worst, and the third person point-of-view didn’t help. There are too many plot holes and most confrontations felt at times half-baked and at times downright flat. I mean, why would you discuss the group’s strategies in front of a freaking witch? I’m all for witchcraft and wizardry and there is an unlikely friendship and an amusing villain involved, which are always a treat, but Hollywood Witch Hunter just didn’t slay me. And I’d say another run of edits wouldn’t hurt, but I’m being subjective more than anything right now—as is invariably the case with my reviews. I did enjoy Arlo though. His lines are often grin-or-snort-inducing—but even he can only carry so much dialogues—and I’m totally into his story arc. In fact, I wonder if I would’ve appreciated the book more if he were the point-of-view character.

“I’m just saying, sometimes we don’t understand why people do what they do.”

Reminiscent of the Vampire Academy movie, Hollywood Witch Hunter had good potentials but somehow lost them in translation.

1.5 out of 5

Author

Valerie Tejeda

Entertainment journalist and author Valerie Tejeda spends her days reporting on books, television, and all things pertaining to pop culture, and spends her nights writing novels for teens. Her stories have appeared on a variety of different publications, including Vanity FairMTV, The Huffington Post, Teen Vogue, Latina, Yahoo! Shine, Cosmopolitan, and more. Valerie holds a Bachelors of Arts in Psychology and is currently based in Northern California with her husband, where she reads loads of books, binge-watches Netflix, and drinks tons of Peets coffee. Hollywood Witch Hunter is her debut.

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Whoa. This is my shortest review to date. So is this book on your TBR? Can you put up with a novel with a character(s) you can’t connect with? Moreover, do you DNF often? Do you DNF at all? Let’s talk!

You can also stalk follow me elsewhere! On Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, Goodreads, and Bloglovin.

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16 thoughts on “REVIEW: Hollywood Witch Hunter by Valerie Tejeda

  1. Basically I only looked at the cover when clicking through on my Bloglovin’ feed and was thinking “WITCHES YES PLEASE”. So I was somewhat unpleasantly surprised when I saw it was witch HUNTERS, but was holding out hope that the witches would turn out to be not so evil, which was ultimately not realised. I suppose, therefore, you could say my review-reading experience was somewhat like your book-reading experience, only I was reading a good review about a subpar book and you were just reading a subpar book. ANYWAYS. Thanks for the review, and I shall keep my distance despite WITCHES DAMMIT.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This review was so amusing, I don’t think I’ve ever seen you so strongly hate something. Your review was one bg, polite, “IT WAS TERRIBLE. DO NOT READ. EW.” And that was just…LOL. This made my morning.

    1. This is a blog tour book that I was asked to read, so I’m currently getting back to it after our wonderful read of Fans. (!!!!!)
    2. I think I just DNF if I cannot connect to the characters. Lol. If I’m too annoyed, I just toss it aside. No wasting my time.
    3. I DNF like it’s my job. I try to make myself stay until page 100 or 11 chapters. (11 because that was how much I But, if it still sucks 2 chapters in, and its just terrible…I’m dropping it. So many books. Too little time. I probably DNF half of what I read per year. You?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. HAHAHAHA! One day I’m gonna write a very ranty review a la Aimee and I wouldn’t care… Yeah, no, I just don’t have that in me. And I wasn’t hating on the book, Wesaun. Hate is such a strong word for me. But glad to have made your morning, friend. 😉

      1. FANS!!!!!!! So, wait. Will you still finish this title? I mean, for the book tour.

      2. 100 pages is fair enough. I think Adam uses that mark, too. Some of the readers/bloggers I look up to only do 50 pages.

      2.a. That’s the thing, I don’t DNF on purpose. Like, the only time I ever DNF something (actually two something’s) was when an e-ARC expired when I was in the middle of reading. So, yeah. Maybe one day I’ll join your bandwagon, but right now I have no trouble shouldering on.

      Thanks for dropping by!

      Like

  3. Oooh. Sorry, have i offended you? If so, sorry! I use the term pretty loosely when it comes to fiction. Didn’t mean to step on your toes, though! Yes, I’m entertained. Not 4-5 STAR OMG but definitely entertained enough to keep reading. Ah, your look on DNF’ing is interesting. Oh, 50 pages? Cool! I’m glad I did.

    Like

  4. I got this one confused with Witch Hunter for a second there, hah! OH dear, this one sounds like a bit of a mess. I definitely wouldn’t like Iris either – can’t deal with characters who are whiny! And ew, plot holes. No thanks.

    Excellent review! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I just came across this review on Twitter and I have to say I loved this book and so do lots of other people so I wouldn’t be swayed by this review! I thought it was entertaining and I enjoyed the satirical elements and me and my reading group did not find any plot holes and we didn’t see Iris as whiny but strong. I also really love the author and everything she is doing to promote diversity.

    After seeing this review I found your instagram account and saw this picture and I noticed the author commented on the photo and she was really kind to you and you even thanked her for being gracious. Doesn’t seem very “gracious” of you to then repost this review on Twitter after that interaction, don’t you think?

    I am a Latina and I never see books with Latina MCs. Of course you have a right to your opinion and everyone has different taste in books but since there are literally no other books with Latina MCs is it really necessary to repost a negative review about a diverse book to Twitter? It just seems uncalled for if you already posted about it before.

    Personally, I want to see more books with Latinas so I am passionate about not swaying people away from books like these because chances are they will probably like it even though you didn’t. Everyone I recommended it to does!

    Anyway, hope this didn’t offend you.

    Viv

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