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Adventures in Babysitting meets Buffy the Vampire Slayer in this funny, action-packed sequel about a coven of witchy babysitters who realize their calling to protect the innocent and save the world from an onslaught of evil. Esme Pearl's life used to be all about bumming rides and babysitting. Sure, it wasn't glamorous, but it was predictable. All that changed when Cassandr Adventures in Babysitting meets Buffy the Vampire Slayer in this funny, action-packed sequel about a coven of witchy babysitters who realize their calling to protect the innocent and save the world from an onslaught of evil. Esme Pearl's life used to be all about bumming rides and babysitting. Sure, it wasn't glamorous, but it was predictable. All that changed when Cassandra Heaven came to town, and they discovered their complicated, and connected, legacy: Esme and Cassandra are Sitters, supernaturally-gifted teens armed with an ever-changing grimoire of Sitter witchcraft to help them protect the innocent and keep evil demons at bay. You know, the typical teenage stuff. But just as Esme is starting to adjust to--and maybe even like--her new normal, life lobs another glitter bomb her way. The Synod--the Sitterhood's governing circle--has called a Summit, a once-in-a-generation gathering that promises training, education, and whole lot of ice-breakers. Esme should be excited--a Summit might mean she can finally get the answers she desperately wants--but she can't shake a building sense of panic. Especially since Cassandra's not acting like herself; Esme's dad is MIA; Pig is out of dog food; Janis is scared to be alone; and there's a guy who seems too good to be true, again. Worst of all, it soon becomes clear, there's no one watching the kids. It's obvious the Summit is a haute mess, but will it be a deadly one, too?


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Adventures in Babysitting meets Buffy the Vampire Slayer in this funny, action-packed sequel about a coven of witchy babysitters who realize their calling to protect the innocent and save the world from an onslaught of evil. Esme Pearl's life used to be all about bumming rides and babysitting. Sure, it wasn't glamorous, but it was predictable. All that changed when Cassandr Adventures in Babysitting meets Buffy the Vampire Slayer in this funny, action-packed sequel about a coven of witchy babysitters who realize their calling to protect the innocent and save the world from an onslaught of evil. Esme Pearl's life used to be all about bumming rides and babysitting. Sure, it wasn't glamorous, but it was predictable. All that changed when Cassandra Heaven came to town, and they discovered their complicated, and connected, legacy: Esme and Cassandra are Sitters, supernaturally-gifted teens armed with an ever-changing grimoire of Sitter witchcraft to help them protect the innocent and keep evil demons at bay. You know, the typical teenage stuff. But just as Esme is starting to adjust to--and maybe even like--her new normal, life lobs another glitter bomb her way. The Synod--the Sitterhood's governing circle--has called a Summit, a once-in-a-generation gathering that promises training, education, and whole lot of ice-breakers. Esme should be excited--a Summit might mean she can finally get the answers she desperately wants--but she can't shake a building sense of panic. Especially since Cassandra's not acting like herself; Esme's dad is MIA; Pig is out of dog food; Janis is scared to be alone; and there's a guy who seems too good to be true, again. Worst of all, it soon becomes clear, there's no one watching the kids. It's obvious the Summit is a haute mess, but will it be a deadly one, too?

30 review for For Better or Cursed

  1. 4 out of 5

    megs_bookrack

    As with many things in 2020, the publication date for this book was pushed back to December, because, y'all know... I just received an ARC and I am so happy!!!! I have been really looking forward to this one. Thank you, Random House Childrens!!!! Original: Wait. What?! This has already released?! I have heard little to zero buzz about it. Personally, I am excited to check back in with Esme. Hoping the good humor continues! As with many things in 2020, the publication date for this book was pushed back to December, because, y'all know... I just received an ARC and I am so happy!!!! I have been really looking forward to this one. Thank you, Random House Childrens!!!! Original: Wait. What?! This has already released?! I have heard little to zero buzz about it. Personally, I am excited to check back in with Esme. Hoping the good humor continues!

  2. 4 out of 5

    Ashley

    Star Rating: —> 4.5 Stars My rating on this one is mostly based on my enjoyment of this rollercoaster ride of a sequel! This was SO SO SO good!!! It was just SO entertaining & unexpected; it was even better than the first one! I really just enjoyed this SO much. An awesome, fresh take on, somewhere between the abilities of witches & hunters, guardians of the innocent (against demons, monsters, etc.)... SITTERS! Sitters, slayers... tomato, tomahtoe ;-) These books are like y'know, that guilty pleas Star Rating: —> 4.5 Stars My rating on this one is mostly based on my enjoyment of this rollercoaster ride of a sequel! This was SO SO SO good!!! It was just SO entertaining & unexpected; it was even better than the first one! I really just enjoyed this SO much. An awesome, fresh take on, somewhere between the abilities of witches & hunters, guardians of the innocent (against demons, monsters, etc.)... SITTERS! Sitters, slayers... tomato, tomahtoe ;-) These books are like y'know, that guilty pleasure tv show you watch on the CW, or wherever.... :-P A WONDERFUL diverse sequel full of action, fierce females, amazing friendships, lgbtqia+ rep... and just allwitchy good fun fun fun! 8.5/10 recommend! An absolute 90's kinda funky dreammmm of a book!! If you're considering reading it after you read The Babysitters Coven, & gave that at least 3 stars, then i'd def give it a go!

  3. 4 out of 5

    Miranda Reads

    Just published my October Book Vlog and whew! It was a lot of reading but so worth it! The Written Review Esme and Cassandra, under the tutelage of Brian, just finished saving the world from an apocalypse (not that anyone even noticed, thanks to some handy-dandy mindwiping). These teens have just come to terms with their calling: to protect the innocent and save the world from an onslaught of evil. And what a doozy it was. They now know that in their world, there are Sitters - who use their Just published my October Book Vlog and whew! It was a lot of reading but so worth it! The Written Review Esme and Cassandra, under the tutelage of Brian, just finished saving the world from an apocalypse (not that anyone even noticed, thanks to some handy-dandy mindwiping). These teens have just come to terms with their calling: to protect the innocent and save the world from an onslaught of evil. And what a doozy it was. They now know that in their world, there are Sitters - who use their witchy magic to keep their charges safe and the world free of demonic portals (caused by red magic). After the crazy events of the last near-miss of the apocalypse, Esme and Cassandra thought they were going to have a nice and relaxing break - only to realize that the Synod (the people who govern the Sitterhood covens) have called a Summit - a huge magical conference. And it's happening in their home town! Esme and Cassandra have less than 5 days to host a party and tidy up some rather inconvenient secrets of their town. And at the same time, Esme's dad has pulled a disappearing act, her mom's curse is being ignored by the higherups in the coven and Cassandra is likely cursed! What is a girl to do? So, while this was a second book in the series, I do feel like it can be read as a standalone. The characters were pretty good. Esme was an interesting main character to watch and was engaging throughout. She had a great sense of humor and her little observations about characters or moments of snark really made it enjoyable. I loved the way she'd play off of other characters in the book - so hilarious! I loved the concept of this book - with the witchiness combined with babysitting. And I loved the way the author kept adding more and more tension for the characters. It kind of felt like everyone was juggling eggs and I was waiting for one of them to fall and crack. All in all, this is my first time with the Babysitters Coven but I really enjoyed the experience!! With thanks to Netgalley, Kate Williams and Delacorte Press for a free copy in exchange for an honest review YouTube | Blog | Instagram | Twitter | Facebook | Snapchat @miranda_reads

  4. 5 out of 5

    Lauren

    A great second book in The Babysitters Coven series. There are still things that need to be resolved so there has to be a third book in the works... right?? Right? This one takes place not long after the last. A month or so in fact because the first was during Halloween and this one everyone is ready for Christmas. With like three days notice the leaders of the Sitters decides to close all the portals and have a giant multi-day meeting, in Esme's tiny town. Of course nothing is what it seems and A great second book in The Babysitters Coven series. There are still things that need to be resolved so there has to be a third book in the works... right?? Right? This one takes place not long after the last. A month or so in fact because the first was during Halloween and this one everyone is ready for Christmas. With like three days notice the leaders of the Sitters decides to close all the portals and have a giant multi-day meeting, in Esme's tiny town. Of course nothing is what it seems and demons are now trapped on Earth and creating hell.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Ms. Yingling

    E ARC provided by Netgalley Definitely look for this one for a high school or public library. Fun story. I was hoping that this one would appeal to my students, but it ended up having more YA pacing and descriptions to it, so I don't know that I'll look for book one. This made me feel old; when I was in middle school, people stopped babysitting when they hit high school, because they could get other jobs. Now, I think parents don't hire 11 year olds to watch their children from 6 p.m. to 2 a.m. w E ARC provided by Netgalley Definitely look for this one for a high school or public library. Fun story. I was hoping that this one would appeal to my students, but it ended up having more YA pacing and descriptions to it, so I don't know that I'll look for book one. This made me feel old; when I was in middle school, people stopped babysitting when they hit high school, because they could get other jobs. Now, I think parents don't hire 11 year olds to watch their children from 6 p.m. to 2 a.m. when they work a night shift. They want to hire high school students. This would also explain why books on babysitting don't circulate well in my library.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Jocelyn

    3.5, rounding up. The Babysitters Coven series is so full of humor and adventure! I always have a good time when I'm reading them, and For Better or Cursed helped me cope with a fairly serious reading slump. Lighthearted and fun, For Better or Cursed followed Esme and Cassandra on to the next chapter of their Sitter experience. Sitters are like babysitters, but instead of babysitting children and keeping them safe, they're babysitting the world and keeping it safe from demons. And instead of bei 3.5, rounding up. The Babysitters Coven series is so full of humor and adventure! I always have a good time when I'm reading them, and For Better or Cursed helped me cope with a fairly serious reading slump. Lighthearted and fun, For Better or Cursed followed Esme and Cassandra on to the next chapter of their Sitter experience. Sitters are like babysitters, but instead of babysitting children and keeping them safe, they're babysitting the world and keeping it safe from demons. And instead of being CPR qualified, they have specialized magic powers. In the first installment of the series, Esme and Cassandra learned the truth about their birthright and their family legacies. In For Better or Cursed, they are summoned to a Sitters' Summit, but corruption and conspiracy threaten not only the Sitterhood and Esme and Cassandra's families, but also the entire world. I love the characters in these books. I love that they feel like real teenagers with strong personalities and have to deal with real-life issues (like poverty and broken families) along with cosmic and paranormal threats. Kate Williams' writing has great pacing that made me excited to pick this book up despite struggling to read anything at the moment. The pop culture references were very fun, and Esme and her best friend Janis really remind me of Andie from Pretty in Pink (one of my all-time favs still to this day). In fact, this series gets compared to The Babysitters Club and Buffy often, but I also think there is a strong comparison to the John Hughes universe. I know there is a lot to criticize and examine concerning those films, but there is a warmth to them that I have always enjoyed, and I feel that warmth here. Not everyone will feel that, however. While I greatly enjoyed this book, it, unfortunately, suffers from middle child syndrome (in the bookish world). I felt that the external conflict was an afterthought, and the more interesting dynamics were the interpersonal relationships. I think Williams felt that as well because the external conflict seemed rushed and a bit lacking in emotional weight. Unfortunately, the plot was constructed in a way that also pushed the interpersonal and familial relationships aside. I think Williams started exploring some interesting emotional journeys for her well-crafted characters, but those seemed to drop off as the external conflict picked up. This resulted in a slightly unsatisfactory conclusion to this installment. Luckily we have another book coming, and I hope these lingering threads will be tied up. What I did appreciate was the continuing expansion of the diversity of the characters. Williams' strength truly is her character work (which is why I would like to see her focus in that direction). Her characters grew and developed in fascinating ways in For Better or Cursed (trying to avoid spoilers here), and I hope to see that continue into future books. Overall, this was a delightfully fun read, and (surprise) it takes place during the winter holidays so it gave me a lot of Christmas vibes at just the right time of year! If you are struggling to finish a book right now (which is understandable) and are having a hard time feeling holly jolly during a difficult holiday season (also understandable), For Better or Cursed might be just the thing to cheer you up! Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for providing a digital ARC for review.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Paige Green

    Disclaimer: I received this e-arc from the publisher. Thanks! All opinions are my own. Book: For Better or Cursed Author: Kate Williams Book Series: The Babysitters Coven Book 2 Diversity: f/f relationships Rating: 5/5 Recommended For...: December 15, 2020 Publication Date: Publisher: Delacorte Press Pages: 384 Recommended Age: 16+ (Gore, Violence, Animal violence/near starvation) Synopsis: Adventures in Babysitting meets Buffy the Vampire Slayer in this funny, action-packed sequel about a coven of witchy Disclaimer: I received this e-arc from the publisher. Thanks! All opinions are my own. Book: For Better or Cursed Author: Kate Williams Book Series: The Babysitters Coven Book 2 Diversity: f/f relationships Rating: 5/5 Recommended For...: December 15, 2020 Publication Date: Publisher: Delacorte Press Pages: 384 Recommended Age: 16+ (Gore, Violence, Animal violence/near starvation) Synopsis: Adventures in Babysitting meets Buffy the Vampire Slayer in this funny, action-packed sequel about a coven of witchy babysitters who realize their calling to protect the innocent and save the world from an onslaught of evil. Esme Pearl's life used to be all about bumming rides and babysitting. Sure, it wasn't glamorous, but it was predictable. All that changed when Cassandra Heaven came to town, and they discovered their complicated, and connected, legacy: Esme and Cassandra are Sitters, supernaturally-gifted teens armed with an ever-changing grimoire of Sitter witchcraft to help them protect the innocent and keep evil demons at bay. You know, the typical teenage stuff. But just as Esme is starting to adjust to--and maybe even like--her new normal, life lobs another glitter bomb her way. The Synod--the Sitterhood's governing circle--has called a Summit, a once-in-a-generation gathering that promises training, education, and whole lot of ice-breakers. Esme should be excited--a Summit might mean she can finally get the answers she desperately wants--but she can't shake a building sense of panic. Especially since Cassandra's not acting like herself; Esme's dad is MIA; Pig is out of dog food; Janis is scared to be alone; and there's a guy who seems too good to be true, again. Worst of all, it soon becomes clear, there's no one watching the kids. It's obvious the Summit is a haute mess, but will it be a deadly one, too? Review: Oh my word I fell in love with this sequel! While the first book is still a bit better in my opinion I really enjoyed this sequel. I felt that the world building was very well done and the character development of the main characters and our side characters were also very well done. The plot of this book is much more intriguing then the first book and I am interested to see where this goes. I think this has an excellent shot of being one of my favorite series in most recent years. I love all of the little callbacks to babysitters and horror films and I love just basically everything about this book. The only thing that I could really fault the book for is that it did take a little bit for me to remember the events of book one. but I do say that the author did well with presenting the material in a more relatable way than just a big info dump at the very beginning. but in getting that information it did take a little bit and I was confused through the first couple of chapters. Verdict: Highly recommend!

  8. 4 out of 5

    Sarah Jefferson

    After the events on Halloween in The Babysitters Coven, Esme and Cassandra have started to get the hang of Sitter life: Fighting demons, protecting the innocent, and training with Brian, their counsel. However, after being trapped in the Negative, Cassandra isn't quite herself, unable to remember exactly what happened in the Negative and having crazed episodes. To top it off, Esme's dad is having money trouble AND their coven is hosting the next Summit for all sitters. The Summit should be a tim After the events on Halloween in The Babysitters Coven, Esme and Cassandra have started to get the hang of Sitter life: Fighting demons, protecting the innocent, and training with Brian, their counsel. However, after being trapped in the Negative, Cassandra isn't quite herself, unable to remember exactly what happened in the Negative and having crazed episodes. To top it off, Esme's dad is having money trouble AND their coven is hosting the next Summit for all sitters. The Summit should be a time for training, networking, and fun, but Esme and Cassandra can't seem to shake all their troubles. Will Esme find a way to break her mom's curse? Can Cassandra finally remember what happened in the Negative? I feel like this is a solid second book, but I definitely have just as many questions as I did at the end of the first. I really enjoyed finding out what exactly a Sitter's summit consists of, and the shenanigans that Esme and Cassandra get into. It was also fun to see a lot of the pop culture references used, especially the ones related to babysitters. It was also fun to meet new Sitters and learn about Sitter history. I do wish it could have been a little faster pacing, but overall it was a fun, easy read.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Elizabeth Mellen

    I’m disappointed to be giving this 3 stars because I loved the first one and was hoping to recapture that experience, but it was so slow and some very odd descriptions and similes/metaphors that left me perplexed. (I hope no one is comparing my face to a Krispy Kreme 😂) Cassandra made me more and more uncomfortable as the book went on, and I wanted to be rooting for her. She’s really horrible to her brother, and Esme seems slightly concerned but never takes it further. Janis and Pig were my favor I’m disappointed to be giving this 3 stars because I loved the first one and was hoping to recapture that experience, but it was so slow and some very odd descriptions and similes/metaphors that left me perplexed. (I hope no one is comparing my face to a Krispy Kreme 😂) Cassandra made me more and more uncomfortable as the book went on, and I wanted to be rooting for her. She’s really horrible to her brother, and Esme seems slightly concerned but never takes it further. Janis and Pig were my favorite parts of this book, and there wasn’t enough of them! I enjoyed this enough to try the next one - I HAVE QUESTIONS THAT NEED ANSWERS There was some fun, some pop culture references, and some magical teen girls saving the world, and that was nice, but overall the pacing was too slow and the plot didn’t get to where I wanted it.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Alexis (The Book Democracy)

    3.5/5 stars ** I was provided an E-ARC of this book from NetGalley and the publisher in exchange for my honest review ** I'll start by saying I did enjoy this book, however not as much as the first book. I think I just felt that the beginning was slow and the end was very fast-paced, so I kept wanting to put it down. This of course this changed the further I got into the book, but it hindered my enjoyment a little. Overall though I enjoyed the story and the writing and would definitely recommend 3.5/5 stars ** I was provided an E-ARC of this book from NetGalley and the publisher in exchange for my honest review ** I'll start by saying I did enjoy this book, however not as much as the first book. I think I just felt that the beginning was slow and the end was very fast-paced, so I kept wanting to put it down. This of course this changed the further I got into the book, but it hindered my enjoyment a little. Overall though I enjoyed the story and the writing and would definitely recommend picking it up.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Jacob Rundle

    Who doesn’t enjoy witches???? Well, Kate is back with her babysitting witches! I love how these characters see magic, use it and fear its consequences. I loved loved loved this one! We need more! Haha

  12. 5 out of 5

    Tiffani Reads

    Solid second book in a very fun series. This books is a fun time from start to finish.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Amanda

    Really enjoyed this fun book! Can’t wait for the next in the series!

  14. 5 out of 5

    Jessica Williamson

    DNF @ 30% I can't do it. These covers are so gorgeous and I love the premise but I can't deal with the execution of the story. The plot is not for me. There are too many variables of lying to everyone around you, hiding BIG things from the people who could help, and characters who are basically pointless. Throw in a shady love interested and you've got this book. Oh yeah, don't forget that everyone is in danger of dying but they're planning a huge party? I just . . . it's so ridiculous I can't stan DNF @ 30% I can't do it. These covers are so gorgeous and I love the premise but I can't deal with the execution of the story. The plot is not for me. There are too many variables of lying to everyone around you, hiding BIG things from the people who could help, and characters who are basically pointless. Throw in a shady love interested and you've got this book. Oh yeah, don't forget that everyone is in danger of dying but they're planning a huge party? I just . . . it's so ridiculous I can't stand it. And let's talk about the real issue, which is this gem: “We are,” she said, “After we go to Chik-Fil-A.” “You know they’re homophobes, right?” I asked. Janis grimaced and nodded. “I know, I know,” she said, “but…” We finished the sentence together: “Waffle fries.” Y'all, the other main character in this series is queer. And even if she wasn't and this wasn't basically saying "I don't care if my bff is gay, they have great waffle fries", it's still saying "I know this company is shady AF but I don't care." I cannot and WILL NOT support this book or this author.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Michelle

    I received this book as an ARC from NetGalley. Thank you to NetGalley, Kate Williams, and Delacorte Press for the opportunity to read and review this book! After the events that took place in the book “The Babysitters Coven”, Esme Pearl and her friend Cassandra are tasked with planning a convention for all the Sitters in their coven. This sounds like an easy task, but at the same time Esme is also trying to juggle babysitting, high school, returning demons to the Negative, and breaking curses al I received this book as an ARC from NetGalley. Thank you to NetGalley, Kate Williams, and Delacorte Press for the opportunity to read and review this book! After the events that took place in the book “The Babysitters Coven”, Esme Pearl and her friend Cassandra are tasked with planning a convention for all the Sitters in their coven. This sounds like an easy task, but at the same time Esme is also trying to juggle babysitting, high school, returning demons to the Negative, and breaking curses all while learning how to be a good Sitter. Plus she only has a week to plan for the biggest Sitter convention of the year. What could possibly go wrong? This book brings together old friendships, new friendships, witches, demons, and a dog named Pig all in a small Kansas town. I really like the idea that there are babysitters out there who have powers, and who are also in charge of protecting humanity from evil. It’s a fun idea. This was a fun book, and I’m really looking forward to the next one in the series. I give this book a 3.5 out of 5 stars. While I really liked it, I definitely liked the first one better. There was action and magic in this book, but not as much as the first one. This book had a good ending, which wrapped some things up, but left some things open ended so as to hint at a book after this. I quite enjoyed the new friendships that were forged in this book too, and the unexpected LBGTQ+ romance that blossomed. I recommend this book and it’s prequel.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Rafael Rodriguez

    Thank you To Netgalley for allowing to read the book an giving me the eBook in exchange for my honest opinion. Having read the first book in the series I am glad the pace of the first book has continued into the 2nd. The pace is set very slow at the beginning focusing more on the average teen life and then speeding a head infusing the supernatural side of everything. It was good to see all of our favorite characters from the 1st book coming back and all the new characters that joined us in this ne Thank you To Netgalley for allowing to read the book an giving me the eBook in exchange for my honest opinion. Having read the first book in the series I am glad the pace of the first book has continued into the 2nd. The pace is set very slow at the beginning focusing more on the average teen life and then speeding a head infusing the supernatural side of everything. It was good to see all of our favorite characters from the 1st book coming back and all the new characters that joined us in this new segment, I was Satisfied with the amount of new characters there were not too many and the ones we did get got their "screen time" and introductions without taking from the story line. One thing that i did notice was a few loose ends were left floating through out the story. I feel like a lot of the Interpersonal and familial relationships were brought up and then pushed aside for the plot which helps the story moved forward but it did leave many hanging string around with there being a third book in the works i do hope that they are brought up and discussed so they can have their screen time. I give this book a 4/5 Description Adventures in Babysitting meets Buffy the Vampire Slayer in this funny, action-packed sequel about a coven of witchy babysitters who realize their calling to protect the innocent and save the world from an onslaught of evil. Esme Pearl's life used to be all about bumming rides and babysitting. Sure, it wasn't glamorous, but it was predictable. All that changed when Cassandra Heaven came to town, and they discovered their complicated, and connected, legacy: Esme and Cassandra are Sitters, supernaturally-gifted teens armed with an ever-changing grimoire of Sitter witchcraft to help them protect the innocent and keep evil demons at bay. You know, the typical teenage stuff. But just as Esme is starting to adjust to--and maybe even like--her new normal, life lobs another glitter bomb her way. The Synod--the Sisterhood's governing circle--has called a Summit, a once-in-a-generation gathering that promises training, education, and whole lot of ice-breakers. Esme should be excited--a Summit might mean she can finally get the answers she desperately wants--but she can't shake a building sense of panic. Especially since Cassandra's not acting like herself; Esme's dad is MIA; Pig is out of dog food; Janis is scared to be alone; and there's a guy who seems too good to be true, again. Worst of all, it soon becomes clear, there's no one watching the kids. It's obvious the Summit is a haute mess, but will it be a deadly one, too?

  17. 5 out of 5

    Dai Guerra

    Thoughts and Themes: I really enjoyed the first book in this series so I was really glad that I got approved to read this one on Netgalley. I was happy to find that this book was better than the first one and kept me intriged the whole time I was reading it. While the pacing of this book is similar to the first book, I found that this one kept my attention through the beginning because it had a lot of new concepts being introduced. I recall that the first book was advertised as a mix between buff Thoughts and Themes: I really enjoyed the first book in this series so I was really glad that I got approved to read this one on Netgalley. I was happy to find that this book was better than the first one and kept me intriged the whole time I was reading it. While the pacing of this book is similar to the first book, I found that this one kept my attention through the beginning because it had a lot of new concepts being introduced. I recall that the first book was advertised as a mix between buff the vampire slayer and the babysitter’s club but I am unable to comment on the accuracy of either of those comparisons. I also recall that the first book felt like a call back to the 90s but this book feels a lot more set in modern times. I go back and forth with if this book is something that can be read on its own or if you need to read the first one before going into this one. This book does build upon the things that happen in the first story so I think it is better if you go ahead and read that book before you start it on this one. If you decide not to read the first one before you give this one a try, just keep reading as things do slowly get explained throughout this story and if you do enjoy it I suggest going back and picking up the first one to get more background. Characters: You get introduced to the majority of the characters in this story throughout the first book but there are a bit of new characters that get introduced mid story. I really enjoyed getting to know the new characters that were introduced and seeing how they would play into this story. I also liked getting to know more about how these characters got to live as sitters their whole lives while Esme and Cassandra were new to this life. Writing Style: This book is told in first person through the perspective of Esme. I enjoy a first person narrator because I feel that it lets you get an in depth view of one story. I like that we don’t get to see how Cassandra feels through all of this or that we don’t get to see Janis’s point of view because I feel that would take away from the main story line.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Andee

    BLOG|INSTAGRAM|TWITTER|YOUTUBE Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for giving me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Full review will be posted in December on my blog. This plot was so insane and all over the place with useless information that even the Esme points it out. Much like the first book, we have endless paragraphs of descriptions of outfits. This would be fine if there was a more sensible plot, but alas, that was not the case. My other gripe was this quote here: BLOG|INSTAGRAM|TWITTER|YOUTUBE Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for giving me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Full review will be posted in December on my blog. This plot was so insane and all over the place with useless information that even the Esme points it out. Much like the first book, we have endless paragraphs of descriptions of outfits. This would be fine if there was a more sensible plot, but alas, that was not the case. My other gripe was this quote here: “We are,” she said, “After we go to Chik-Fil-A.” “You know they’re homophobes, right?” I asked. Janis grimaced and nodded. “I know, I know,” she said, “but…” We finished the sentence together: “Waffle fries.” You may not recall from the first book, but Esme’s partner in Sitter Coven is queer. Cassandra likes girls. Esme said, I know they hate your fundamental human rights, but those fries, though! This was in the first 12% of the book, and for it to be a young YA book, I don’t like the lesson that that line teaches. It seems like an innocent joke, but it’s really telling that Esme does not care about any struggles Cassandra may go through. Too much of this plot focused on hiding things from people who needed to know what was going on. Instead of focusing on that, the story takes a drastic turn to something entirely different. This book ended on a cliffhanger, but I found the characters so infuriating that I don’t care to read the third one. The only characters in this story who deserve rights are Janis and Pig. No one else. I don’t care about anyone else in this book, and I don’t care what happens to them. Needless to say, this was a 2-star read.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Lelia Taylor

    You know the TV commercial for Geico that shows a group of teens trying to escape from a Michael Myers-esque killer and they choose to get behind the chainsaws instead of getting in the running car? I must have seen it a gazillion times and I still always chuckle, point being, this book’s description somehow made me think of that commercial. I was primed for some good, snarky laughs and Ms. Williams did not disappoint. Now, granted, some of the language is a bit rough but not excessively so espe You know the TV commercial for Geico that shows a group of teens trying to escape from a Michael Myers-esque killer and they choose to get behind the chainsaws instead of getting in the running car? I must have seen it a gazillion times and I still always chuckle, point being, this book’s description somehow made me think of that commercial. I was primed for some good, snarky laughs and Ms. Williams did not disappoint. Now, granted, some of the language is a bit rough but not excessively so especially when you consider that this is teens defending humanity from demons. As you might expect when it comes to fighting evil, things don’t always go well and Cassandra is suffering some pretty important amnesia, leaving Esme not exactly on her own but definitely with a partner who’s not on top of her game. The timing for that isn’t great since their coven has to host the upcoming Summit and we all know that trouble is likely to ensue. It does, of course, but this is a fun read although I wish Esme were more aware of behavior that’s somewhat dismissive of Cassandra’s LGBTQ concerns; still, I have to remind myself that, as unenlightened as we might be today, it was worse in the 1990’s when this is set. Having said that, Cassandra has developed her own unpleasant ways so neither girl is entirely likeable. The pacing in this book is also a little slower than I like and, in fact, I think the plot takes a back seat to the characters. Although I’m rarely bothered by not reading books in order, I do think it probably would have been best in this case and I recommend that anyone wanting to try this series start with the first one, The Babysitters Coven, to have a better understanding of how Esme and Cassandra came to be Sitters. After all, being a witch, even a good one, isn’t exactly “typical teenage stuff” ;-)

  20. 4 out of 5

    The Reading Writer- Angie Simmons

    This was such a fun read, and a great sequel book! “ Esme Pearl's life used to be all about bumming rides and babysitting. Sure, it wasn't glamorous, but it was predictable. All that changed when Cassandra Heaven came to town, and they discovered their complicated, and connected, legacy: Esme and Cassandra are Sitters, supernaturally-gifted teens armed with an ever-changing grimoire of Sitter witchcraft to help them protect the innocent and keep evil demons at bay. You know, the typical teenage This was such a fun read, and a great sequel book! “ Esme Pearl's life used to be all about bumming rides and babysitting. Sure, it wasn't glamorous, but it was predictable. All that changed when Cassandra Heaven came to town, and they discovered their complicated, and connected, legacy: Esme and Cassandra are Sitters, supernaturally-gifted teens armed with an ever-changing grimoire of Sitter witchcraft to help them protect the innocent and keep evil demons at bay. You know, the typical teenage stuff. But just as Esme is starting to adjust to--and maybe even like--her new normal, life lobs another glitter bomb her way. The Synod--the Sitterhood's governing circle--has called a Summit, a once-in-a-generation gathering that promises training, education, and whole lot of ice-breakers. Esme should be excited--a Summit might mean she can finally get the answers she desperately wants--but she can't shake a building sense of panic. Especially since Cassandra's not acting like herself; Esme's dad is MIA; Pig is out of dog food; Janis is scared to be alone; and there's a guy who seems too good to be true, again. Worst of all, it soon becomes clear, there's no one watching the kids. It's obvious the Summit is a haute mess, but will it be a deadly one, too?” I do feel like this one has a bit of a slower pace, but it’s a great sequel with some fun references, and I think adults, teens, and middle schoolers will gobble this up. Would make a great Christmas present for the teen in your life, especially paired with book 1! I give this 3.5 stars. *Many thanks to NetGalley and Delacourte Press for the eARC. My opinions are my own.*

  21. 4 out of 5

    Alisha Carderella

    3.25 stars Esme & Cassandra are finally getting the hang of being witchy babysitters- protecting innocent children from evil and doom. Sure, Esme's dad & best friend had their brains fried so they wouldn't remember anything that happened on Halloween, and now she has to lie to them. And, okay, Cassandra is treating her brother like a servant to do her bidding, as well as acting really strange ever since coming back from The Negative. That's ok, they have this. That is they had it. Until the Snyod 3.25 stars Esme & Cassandra are finally getting the hang of being witchy babysitters- protecting innocent children from evil and doom. Sure, Esme's dad & best friend had their brains fried so they wouldn't remember anything that happened on Halloween, and now she has to lie to them. And, okay, Cassandra is treating her brother like a servant to do her bidding, as well as acting really strange ever since coming back from The Negative. That's ok, they have this. That is they had it. Until the Snyod- The Sisterhood governing body- decides now is the time to throw a surprise Summit in their town. Oh- and Esme & Cassandra are in charge of the big party. With all the sitters under one roof, the children will be exposed. Just how much could possibly go wrong in one weekend? A lot. A lot went wrong in one weekend, and it was so fun! This was a pretty strong follow up to The Babysitter's Coven. In this book we learn that the Sisterhood it not all it's cracked up to be. Cassandra and Esme are essentially outsiders, new to the Sisterhood and realize all the other sitter's have been involved with their families all along. It was really great to see the other sitter's, their magic, and get more back story on the Sisterhood in general. The writing is strong with loads of fun pop culture references (though sometimes it did feel a bit much). I especially liked the references to the original Babysitter's Club, and Claudia Kishi! Such a style icon. I was continuously eager to see how the drama in this book would unfold. There are a few twists thrown in, and one of them had me rolling my eyes and laughing at myself for not having seen it (once you see for yourself you'll understand my feeling). The author kept me engaged and wanting more the entire time. I look forward to book 3. *Thank you to NetGalley for proving me with an ARC in exchange for a voluntary and honest review.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Elysian Fields

    For Better or Cursed starts out after the events of The Babysitters Coven (a wonderful story and you need to read it first for the best enjoyment of this book). The babysitters are back in their net adventure and what a ride it is. When Esme and Cassandra return home they start to understand their role in the world and how important they are to the safety and quality of life for the rest of us. There is magic here, action, compassion, heart, and humor. It all mixes together to create a satisfyin For Better or Cursed starts out after the events of The Babysitters Coven (a wonderful story and you need to read it first for the best enjoyment of this book). The babysitters are back in their net adventure and what a ride it is. When Esme and Cassandra return home they start to understand their role in the world and how important they are to the safety and quality of life for the rest of us. There is magic here, action, compassion, heart, and humor. It all mixes together to create a satisfying sequel to book one. I loved that there was more character development and growth in this story and that as a reader I got to know the characters on a deeper level. I also love that the humor was placed in just the right places, making this story that much more additive. Each of the girls has new issues to deal with as well as helping out their town and that aspect really made me feel good. I love that these characters are all about improving life. We are also introduced to new characters and we get some visits from past characters. Overall this story is a great one and I enjoyed it as much as book one. The author really knows how to engage her audience and keep them turning the pages. I think this is a great story for all readers and it can be enjoyed by adults as well as younger children alike. Think if this a book for a family book club. I received an ARC via Netgalley and Random House Children’s Delacorte Press and I am leaving my honest review.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Sam

    The first third of this book is literally the monotony of party planning, and while I can definitely relate to having no clue what is hip with "kids" my age. This was incredibly difficult for me to slog through, and it felt like I was being subjugated to some layer of hell. Especially as someone who has planned a convention and knows that magic or not you need a large team of people and weeks if not months of prep work beforehand, Both the first and second third of this book is incredibly slow-pa The first third of this book is literally the monotony of party planning, and while I can definitely relate to having no clue what is hip with "kids" my age. This was incredibly difficult for me to slog through, and it felt like I was being subjugated to some layer of hell. Especially as someone who has planned a convention and knows that magic or not you need a large team of people and weeks if not months of prep work beforehand, Both the first and second third of this book is incredibly slow-paced. But if you can get through the party planning, you will at least be treated to some more insight into what Sitter culture, history, and practices look like. But in reality, you are left feeling like you didn't learn a lot, which really stinks given that The Summit was introduced as just the kind of place where we would learn that kind of thing. I can't decide if it's because I'm not quite the demographic for this book or just Motives' choice. But I found it really hard to take the villain seriously. Like they felt like you could give them the level of credibility you would Dr. Doofenshmirtz, but they are actually a terrible person that will stab you, I am definitely left with this really meh feeling, much like finishing the first book. Where I think the story is great, but the execution isn't there.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Sam

    The first third of this book is literally the monotony of party planning, and while I can definitely relate to having no clue what is hip with "kids" my age. This was incredibly difficult for me to slog through, and it felt like I was being subjugated to some layer of hell. Especially as someone who has planned a convention and knows that magic or not you need a large team of people and weeks if not months of prep work beforehand, Both the first and second third of this book is incredibly slow-pa The first third of this book is literally the monotony of party planning, and while I can definitely relate to having no clue what is hip with "kids" my age. This was incredibly difficult for me to slog through, and it felt like I was being subjugated to some layer of hell. Especially as someone who has planned a convention and knows that magic or not you need a large team of people and weeks if not months of prep work beforehand, Both the first and second third of this book is incredibly slow-paced. But if you can get through the party planning, you will at least be treated to some more insight into what Sitter culture, history, and practices look like. But in reality, you are left feeling like you didn't learn a lot, which really stinks given that The Summit was introduced as just the kind of place where we would learn that kind of thing. I can't decide if it's because I'm not quite the demographic for this book or just Motives' choice. But I found it really hard to take the villain seriously. Like they felt like you could give them the level of credibility you would Dr. Doofenshmirtz, but they are actually a terrible person that will stab you, I am definitely left with this really meh feeling, much like finishing the first book. Where I think the story is great, but the execution isn't there.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Nazaret Quintana (bumbleebeela)

    Once again @favouritepagesclub did it, giving me an amazing book when I thought my last readings of the year would go unnoticed. @Heykatewilliams' quick, resourceful and talented pen is something you just can't pass up. For this tour I have read The Babysitters Coven and For Better or Cursed and I can say without fear that they are one of the best books I have read throughout my life about a magical adventure starring a female character. We meet Esme and Cassandra, two sitters in training who hav Once again @favouritepagesclub did it, giving me an amazing book when I thought my last readings of the year would go unnoticed. @Heykatewilliams' quick, resourceful and talented pen is something you just can't pass up. For this tour I have read The Babysitters Coven and For Better or Cursed and I can say without fear that they are one of the best books I have read throughout my life about a magical adventure starring a female character. We meet Esme and Cassandra, two sitters in training who have saved our plane and the kid in their care. However, after being temporarily trapped in the Negative Cassandra experiences the consequences of the trauma. Even though she cannot remember exactly what happened in there. Their town’s coven will host a Summit which generates endless problems that Cass and Esme will have to solve. Won't someone think of the children?! I want to emphasize that Esme can be hilarious and that I've really laughed out loud. This book awakens in me the nostalgia of my childhood and adolescence and I firmly believe that it is the kind of reading that should be promoted in High Schools. Not only does Kate keep you hooked but she also knows how to make you empathize with the characters. I can't wait to see what else Kate brings us in the next installment. I declare myself part of the sitters coven! ♥

  26. 4 out of 5

    Brooke Stouffer

    **Thank you to Random House Childrens and Delacorte Press for giving me an Advanced Reader’s Copy of For Better or For Cursed via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review** I loved reading THE BABYSITTER’S COVEN and the sequel FOR BETTER OR FOR CURSED did not disappoint. This series is so quirky and cool, a unique twist on the “teenage witch” trope. Esme and Cassandra, our two main characters, are Sitters -- a coven of witches whose hobbies include throwing demons back into the Negative Realm a **Thank you to Random House Childrens and Delacorte Press for giving me an Advanced Reader’s Copy of For Better or For Cursed via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review** I loved reading THE BABYSITTER’S COVEN and the sequel FOR BETTER OR FOR CURSED did not disappoint. This series is so quirky and cool, a unique twist on the “teenage witch” trope. Esme and Cassandra, our two main characters, are Sitters -- a coven of witches whose hobbies include throwing demons back into the Negative Realm and making sure that the children that they babysit get to dance lessons on time. In this sequel, we see Esme and Cassandra grow into their identities as Sitters, and meet other Sitters like them. Esme Pearl is a hilarious narrator to the story, mixing in teenage angst, 90s music, and sarcasm that makes this story an absolute gem to read. I love when YA fiction actually makes their teenage characters act like teenagers, and Kate William is so good at creating believable teenage characters. To put it simply, this book is just so. Fun. A great escape into a hilarious, witchy, modern world. I can’t wait until Fall 2021 when book 3 comes out!

  27. 5 out of 5

    Brooke Stouffer

    **Thank you to Random House Childrens and Delacorte Press for giving me an Advanced Reader’s Copy of For Better or For Cursed in exchange for an honest review** I loved reading THE BABYSITTER’S COVEN and the sequel FOR BETTER OR FOR CURSED did not disappoint. This series is so quirky and cool, a unique twist on the “teenage witch” trope. Esme and Cassandra, our two main characters, are Sitters -- a coven of witches whose hobbies include throwing demons back into the Negative Realm and making sure **Thank you to Random House Childrens and Delacorte Press for giving me an Advanced Reader’s Copy of For Better or For Cursed in exchange for an honest review** I loved reading THE BABYSITTER’S COVEN and the sequel FOR BETTER OR FOR CURSED did not disappoint. This series is so quirky and cool, a unique twist on the “teenage witch” trope. Esme and Cassandra, our two main characters, are Sitters -- a coven of witches whose hobbies include throwing demons back into the Negative Realm and making sure that the children that they babysit get to dance lessons on time. In this sequel, we see Esme and Cassandra grow into their identities as Sitters, and meet other Sitters like them. Esme Pearl is a hilarious narrator to the story, mixing in teenage angst, 90s music, and sarcasm that makes this story an absolute gem to read. I love when YA fiction actually makes their teenage characters act like teenagers, and Kate William is so good at creating believable teenage characters. To put it simply, this book is just so. Fun. A great escape into a hilarious, witchy, modern world. I can’t wait until Fall 2021 when book 3 comes out!

  28. 5 out of 5

    Elly (imaginemorebooks)

    *** I received an ARC of this novel from Delacorte Press and NetGalley in exchange for a honest review. However, this does not influence my opinions in any way.*** Publication Date: December 15, 2020 4/5 Stars In all honesty, I was so incredibly excited to finally get my hands on this book! I read the first one last year and it was one of my favorites of 2019. This one also didn’t disappoint. Nothing beats a good witchy teen novel. Williams is so great at writing relatable characters. Even the char *** I received an ARC of this novel from Delacorte Press and NetGalley in exchange for a honest review. However, this does not influence my opinions in any way.*** Publication Date: December 15, 2020 4/5 Stars In all honesty, I was so incredibly excited to finally get my hands on this book! I read the first one last year and it was one of my favorites of 2019. This one also didn’t disappoint. Nothing beats a good witchy teen novel. Williams is so great at writing relatable characters. Even the characters who you are suppose to hate have a wonderful human quality to them. Among a huge group of teenage girls with magic, she did a great job of making sure everyone stood out and had their own clear personality. Personally, I enjoyed the storyline of learning about this whole universe from the first book, and that was still my favorite part of this one. This one also had a funny Christmas vibe to it that I wasn’t expecting, but was so refreshing to see. If you are in the mood for a quirky series featuring badass girls with powers who save the world from demons (heavy Buffy vibes) then this is the perfect series for you! Can’t wait for the third book!!

  29. 5 out of 5

    Yessica

    Thank you to Netgalley for the e-ARC in exchange for an honest review. I had such high hopes for this sequel but I was left disappointed. Esme and Cassandra are protecting their town and continuing their training with Brian when he informs them that there will be a babysitter symposium held in their town. Now, the girls have to pull together a party in record time and meet with other sitters. That is essentially the story until more than halfway through, when you get a tiny bit of plot progression Thank you to Netgalley for the e-ARC in exchange for an honest review. I had such high hopes for this sequel but I was left disappointed. Esme and Cassandra are protecting their town and continuing their training with Brian when he informs them that there will be a babysitter symposium held in their town. Now, the girls have to pull together a party in record time and meet with other sitters. That is essentially the story until more than halfway through, when you get a tiny bit of plot progression when Esme realizes the portals won't open but there are still monsters in town. The characters I love in the first one seem to be presented in a new light, and it's one I do not appreciate. Cassandra has essentially enslaved her brother and feels zero guilt for it, and she and Esme constantly undermine Brian's best efforts to put on a good party. I was so frustrated with their refusal to seek help. I did enjoy some of the new characters, mostly the sitters. There is a new love interest character for Esme, but he's barely there so I don't have enough of a read on him. The story was lackluster. As said before, it's basically a work convention for teens through the book. There was a bit of mystery about where Cassandra's dad is and how they can break the curse on Esme's mom, but those are quickly dropped in favor of more workshops. The climax felt forced. The driving force for the big bad was so ridiculous, I almost DNF, but I was already close to the end. I was left disappointed. I truly enjoyed the first book, and I feel like this book was just filler to get the one or two pieces of plot set up for the third book. I will still read the third one, but this one was just a let down.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Chelsea Danielle

    I received this book as an e-arc in exchange for an honest review. Huge thanks to NetGalley and the publisher! :) First of all, I *may* have squealed when I found out that I was chosen to receive an arc of this book. I was SO excited. I was not disappointed. After reading The Babysitters Coven, I was hoping a sequel would come and after reading For Better or Cursed, I am SO glad that it did. I love how this book delves more into the lives of Esme and Cassandra and transitions nicely into the rip I received this book as an e-arc in exchange for an honest review. Huge thanks to NetGalley and the publisher! :) First of all, I *may* have squealed when I found out that I was chosen to receive an arc of this book. I was SO excited. I was not disappointed. After reading The Babysitters Coven, I was hoping a sequel would come and after reading For Better or Cursed, I am SO glad that it did. I love how this book delves more into the lives of Esme and Cassandra and transitions nicely into the ripple effects of the events in TBC. I must say, I was not fond of what felt like overly in-depth descriptions of outfits, which I also noticed in the first book, but this was easy to forgive given the engaging plot. This is definitely a lighter read but nonetheless engaging and entertaining! I would definitely recommend to anyone and everyone who enjoys supernatural YA fiction.

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