[Isa] A Bad Spell for The Worst Witch (The Worst Witch #3) & The Worst Witch All At Sea (The Worst Witch #4) by Jill Murphy

The Worst Witch All At Sea by Jill MurphyA Bad Spell for The Worst Witch by Jill MurphyTitle: A Bad Spell for The Worst Witch (The Worst Witch #3)
Author: Jill Murphy
Published: 1982
Rating: 4 out of 5 teacups

Title: The Worst Witch All At Sea (The Worst Witch #4)
Author: Jill Murphy
Published: 1993
Rating: 4 out of 5 teacups

I’m going to review two or three of the books at a time because they’re so short and sweet. Much like these reviews are going to be.

In the third volume of the series, A Bad Spell for The Worst Witch, Mildred Hubble does not only – miraculously – begin her second year at Miss Cackle’s Academy for Witches, she also manages to tick off Ethel again. Ethel’s revenge leaves much to be desired if you ask Mildred, but it also earns her a new ally – Algernon Rowan-Webb, a very old magician.

In the fourth volume, The Worst Witch All At Sea, Mildred and the rest of her form – plus Miss Hardbroom and Miss Cackle – are invited spend a weeklong holiday at sea, but there’s no such thing as slacking off where Miss Hardbroom is concerned. It doesn’t help that Mildred’s new cat just isn’t as cuddly as Tabby, and Mildred gets into plenty of shenanigans even on her best behaviour.

Oh Mildred, if only you knew how much I loved you. You might just feel better about yourself.

I still adore her and all the shenanigans she gets into. She’s such a fierce and loving girl, it’s a shame that everything always goes to pot, no matter how much she applies herself. I do sometimes wish there were more to her stories than her continued bad luck and awfulness at everything she lays her hands on, but then these are books for young children and their theme is that she is the absolutely worst witch. There’d be no point if she wasn’t.

Still though, sometimes it might be nice to see her form teacher or even the headmistress actually try and help her instead of just chiding and being upset and, dare I say it, seemingly hateful of her. It paints an unfortunate picture of the adults in a child’s life and it’s no wonder that Mildred not only suffers from bad luck but also bad judgement when there is nobody to guide her. I’m actually a bit disappointed that there hasn’t been more to Miss Hardbroom; we were given a glance of humanity in her at the end of the first book, but there is nothing remotely like that in the other three so far.

The shenanigans themselves are nonetheless lovely to read and I’d be lying if I denied that they make me smile. Mildred shows a very kind heart to those that show her the same respect and, though begrudgingly, also those who seem to despise her and for that I adore her.


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