Mini Review – Nightbooks

Title: Nightbooks

Author: J. A White

3.5 stars

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

From Goodreads:

A boy is imprisoned by a witch and must tell her a new scary story each night to stay alive. This thrilling contemporary fantasy from J. A. White, the acclaimed author of the Thickety series, brings to life the magic and craft of storytelling.

Alex’s original hair-raising tales are the only thing keeping the witch Natacha happy, but soon he’ll run out of pages to read from and be trapped forever. He’s loved scary stories his whole life, and he knows most don’t have a happily ever after. Now that Alex is trapped in a true terrifying tale, he’s desperate for a different ending—and a way out of this twisted place.

This modern spin on the Scheherazade story is perfect for fans of Coraline and A Tale Dark and Grimm. With interwoven tips on writing with suspense, adding in plot twists, hooks, interior logic, and dealing with writer’s block, this is the ideal book for budding writers and all readers of delightfully just-dark-enough tales.

My Thoughts

This was a really interesting little tale. I really nice mix of retelling between the stories of Scheherazade, and Hansel and Gretel. Our main character finds himself prisoner by a witch and is ordered to read her a scary story every night to keep her happy. I really loved all the interludes into the various scary stories. The book itself actually has a great amount of writing advice which would make it the perfect read for aspiring writers. The stories themselves are less scary and more spine tingling, with some devilish cliff-hangers that made these my favourite part of the book.

The rest of the story is a little lack lustre, the witch is more annoying than scary and we don’t really get to explore her magic and its consequences. Overall, this is fun with just the right level of spooky and some interesting twists.


I would love to chat all things bookish with you! You can comment down below or find me on Twitter or Goodreads!

Happy Reading!

One thought on “Mini Review – Nightbooks

  1. The kids and I pretty much felt the same. At first, it had some Coraline vibes even, but we ended up just liking this one and not loving it. Excellent review! I’ll be reviewing this one next week as well. 👍

    Liked by 1 person

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