Review: Spell Weaver by Megan Derr

Myka's dream was to someday own his shop, making and spelling suits that were prized throughout the world. Instead, he rejected an apprenticeship with a master who proved to be reprehensible—and touchable—and lost everything. Now, he works in a derelict shop in the wrong part of town, and it's only a matter of time before he's caught spelling without a license or thrown out by his odious landlord.

The only bright part of his days are the occasional visits from his best client, Johan, a man who works in the palace and always brings the finest suits to have spelled. When he accidentally leaves behind an invitation to the royal ball, Myka takes it, determined to have one evening where he can enjoy himself—and perhaps even spend time with Johan as something other than a spell weaver.

A sweet dose of gay Cinderfella.


Myka has had a rough time. Since his master died before Myka could become a fully certified spell weaver, Myka has been practicing illegally in one of the poorest parts of the city. He’s near destitution, and will likely be on the streets soon, as his landlord has raised the rent too high for Myka to pay.

The only bright part of Myka’s life is one of his clients - Johan. He’s a kind and handsome man who works at the royal palace, and wears some of the finest suits Myka has ever worked on. Myka knows Johan is out of his league, but he can still dream about it. When Johan accidentally leaves behind an invitation to the royal ball, Myka decides to take a chance. He’ll enjoy himself while he can at the ball, and maybe even impress Johan.

But Myka goes to the ball disguised in a mask, so Johan is left wondering who his mysterious dance partner was.

I grew up on Disney, so I can’t help but equate fairy tales with the movies I watched as a kid. ‘Spell Weaver’ has a different take on Cinderella, and it works well. There’s no evil stepmother, fairy godmother, or pumpkin carriage. Instead, we’ve got a lecherous landlord, Myka’s own magical abilities, and a steam-powered carriage. The clock striking midnight still spells trouble.

While Myka’s predicament is quite gloomy, this is a very low-angst story. Myka and Johan’s interactions with one another are sweet and fluffy. They flirt a bit, but for the most part they’re pretty reserved with one another. It’s not until right near the end, when the truth about the ball comes out, that Myka and Johan admit what they feel for each other.

This is a fairy tale, so it’s easy to believe that the two are going to live happily ever after without too much effort.

Unlike a Disney movie, there’s some hot steam in ‘Spell Weaver’. There’s even some manties. Given how short this story is, I was impressed that the author was able to pack in some heat.

Overall, ‘Spell Weaver’ is a short, sweet, and slightly sexy fairy tale. Recommended if you’re looking for a quick read.

Can I request a Hercules and Aladdin mash-up next? Pretty please!


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