Author: Molly Cochran
Series: Legacy, #1
•Publisher: Simon & Schuster BFYR
•Publication Date: December 20, 2011
Opening Line: I was sixteen years old when I discovered exactly who—and what—I was.
When her widowed father dumps 16-year-old Katy Jessevar in a boarding school in Whitfield, Massachusetts, she has no idea that fate has just opened the door to both her future and her past. For one thing, nearly everyone in Whitfield is a witch, as is Katy herself, although she has struggled all her life to hide her talents. For another, Whitfield is the place where her mother killed herself when Katy was a small child. Determined to find the reason for her mother's seemingly senseless act as well as her own strange gifts, Katy embarks on a weird journey of discovery that leads her into the heart of darkness itself.
Katy Jessevar no longer fits in her father's new life. Her proof? Katy is being sent to a boarding school, Ainsworth Preparatory School, 1,500 miles away from where her father and his girlfriend live. I don't know about you, but in my opinion that's a major clue. Katy also has trouble fitting into her new life. Finding out she's a witch and living in a town full of witches is the easy part. Katy has always been able to move objects with her mind, now she knows it's because she's a witch and it's one of her powers. Unfortunately dealing with her abandonment issues, having the entire school hate her and most of the town simply because Katy is an Ainsworth, on her mother's side, and facing mysterious dark forces is altogether a different matter.
I really enjoyed reading Legacy. I love YA books that show adults, especially parents, as real people with a multitude of sins. The world that was built feels very real, nothing was sugarcoated. Molly Cochran showed that the world, despite its many wonders, can be a cruel place. Parents are real people and perfection is beyond them just as it's beyond all of us. Perception also plays a very important part in Legacy. Nothing is as it seems especially when looking into Katy's past.
The witch aspect of Legacy is fantastic. It's historical, but with a slight twist and, of course, a splash of magic. The witches powers are not overdone. They do not need a piece of wood with a phoenix feather shoved in the middle to use their powers. While there are wands in Legacy, they can do nothing on their own. The only thing a wand can do is focus a witch's intention, which is what creates magic in the first place. Katy's wand is just a simple piece of rowan wood. It's made of rowan because Katy's birthday occurs in August, the Druidic month represented by the rowan tree.
While I thoroughly enjoyed reading Legacy I do have a couple of complaints. While there are some slow spots, my biggest complaint is that there are these moments in the story when it jumps to the most extreme outcome. There's no build up, it goes from a four to a ten in one sentence and you are left with a WTF moment. If it's later explained why a particular character's reaction was so extreme, it's done in an obtuse way.
All and all Legacy is a great book. Katy is an appealing character with an amazing sense of strength.
The dead cannot stay with us for long. They cannot bear our sorrow.
That was how easy it was for Mim to take my dad from me. Mim took him, but I guess he hadn't been hanging on very tight to begin with.
I was beginning to formulate a new philosophical though: Contrary to historical belief, horrible people often look really good. There was simply no justice.
New Englanders were extraterrestrials.
And then, for the first time ever, I felt him opening up to me, allowing me to see into his deepest heart. In that heart he loved me. Truly, absolutely, eternally.
"But you won't...""Abandon you? No. Never, never my darling girl."
"Bother? No dear. Sciatica bothers me. Indigestion bothers me. Bunions, arthritis, irregularity... These are things that bother me. The opinion of the Fowlers, however, has nothing to do with me. Or with you."
"Can it make you fly?""Of course not.""Then even if you had it, we'd still be standing here up to our asses in mud, wouldn't we?"