Born Wicked (The Cahill Witch Chronicles)

Interest LevelReading LevelReading A-ZATOSWord Count
Grades 9 - 12Grades 2 - 5n/a4.484594
Blessed with a gift...cursed with a secret.

Everybody knows Cate Cahill and her sisters are eccentric. Too pretty, too reclusive, and far too educated for their own good. But the truth is even worse: they're witches. And if their secret is discovered by the priests of the Brotherhood, it would mean an asylum, a prison ship - or an early grave.

Before her mother died, Cate promised to protect her sisters. But with only six months left to choose between marriage and the Sisterhood, she might not be able to keep her word . . . especially after she finds her mother's diary, uncovering a secret that could spell her family's destruction. Desperate to find alternatives to their fate, Cate starts scouring banned books and questioning rebellious new friends, all while juggling tea parties, shocking marriage proposals, and a forbidden romance with the completely unsuitable Finn Belastra.

If what her mother wrote is true, the Cahill girls aren't safe. Not from the Brotherhood, the Sisterhood - not even from each other.
Hardcover, 336 pages
Published on February 7, 2012 by G.P. Putnam's Sons Books for Young Readers
ISBN-10: 0399257454
ISBN-13: 9780399257452
2 Book Reviews
  • wow257
    wow257over 5 years55 starsFeatured
    The world is imperfect. This cannot be changed. Everyday, we face problems like discrimination and corrupt governments. In Born Wicked, author Jessica Spotswood set up a world that was brimming with all those problems. This story, set back in the late 1800s, is a provoking novel that illustrates real world problems and faces them. The protagonist, Cate Cahill, struggles to survive in a world filled with gender discrimination, poverty, and corrupt governments. She has also been burdened with the task of caring for her younger sisters, Tess and Maura, after her mom died. On top of that, Cate has to keep a dark secret. All of the siblings are witches, capable of committing evils easily, without a second thought. If the current government, the gender-discriminating Brothers find out, the siblings will be in terrible peril. The following December, Cate will have to choose between marrying, or joining the Sisterhood, a group of devout ladies who assist the poor. During the time before her decision, Cate starts becoming rebellious, dates the gardener Finn Belastra, and starts uncovering secrets that were better off hidden. Every kid in the world struggles to accept who they are. We all wear our strengths proudly and stow our weaknesses in the depths of our heart. When our weaknesses are exposed to the world, we feel afraid, alone. This story portrays a girl who accepts her weaknesses and faces them. She tries her best to do everything she can: support her sisters, help her family, and silently defies the government by disagreeing with their views. At the climax, Cate mentally breaks down from the weight of it all. Instead of becoming depressed, Cate chooses to accept the fact that she is imperfect, that she can always improve. There is a theory that bravery is being the only one who knows that you’re afraid. I disagree with that. I think bravery is showing that you can be afraid, that you have your weaknesses too. Born Wicked also taught me the power of sisterly love and rivalry. Throughout the book, Cate has her share of quarrels between her siblings, endless jealousy that makes them drift apart. But in the end, they all proved their affections for each other by respecting each other’s decisions, and working together to achieve a common goal. As the older sibling of two, I often find myself on the receiving end of endless jeers and remarks from my sister. Even though there is a two-year gap between our ages, we compete for titles such as the highest test score, the one with the most friends. But in the end, we often cooperate, and help build on each other to improve. In the book, a prophecy is mentioned, one that determines the fates of the sisters. Personally, I don’t agree with the concept that prophecies always come true. I believe that our fate isn’t written in the stars. We write our own legacy, and will always stand by it. I encourage every kid out there, to be brave, to not be afraid of showing their weaknesses. They do not make us weak, they help make us strong.
    • huntingtonm
      huntingtonmover 8 years