Witches are doing what they can to protect the climate and environment of the world, but non-witches continue to act in destructive ways. Extreme weather events are becoming more and more common, and the witches of the world don’t have enough power to keep everyone safe and return stability to the world because these extreme weather events are happening out of season: blizzards in summer, hurricanes in winter, tornados year round, etc. And since each witch is tied to the season they were born in, they’re frequently powerless to help. Luckily, Clara is an Everwitch, a witch who is tied to all four seasons; the whole magical world is looking to her to help solve the climate crisis, but Clara wants nothing more than to lose her power. She’s hurt too many people with it. Enter Sang, her new mentor who just so happens to be handsome and charming. He hopes to help Clara find new and safe ways to access her power without being hurt in the process.
A magical system based in the current climate crisis was a new idea for me. For the most part, Griffin is very successful in blending this magical system in with the natural processes of the world. The only complaint is that the magic is very US-centric but the climate crisis is a global concern. Do summer witches from the USA experience their full power again if they travel to to southern hemisphere during US Winter? And vice versa? If so (and there’s nothing in the text that would indicate otherwise, as power is described as being tied to the position of the sun), this seems like a much easier fix to using witches at their full power rather than relying on one ever-witch for the entire world.
What was frustrating throughout the book was Clara’s inability to see the consequences of her actions while simultaneously always being preoccupied with the consequences of her actions. Because her the destructive nature of her power is tied to emotional connections, she is determined to remain disconnected from Sang. She knows that she cannot allow herself to get close to him. And then in the next paragraph, she’s opening up emotionally, sharing feelings and fears, and generally making choices to get close to him. It was frustrating.