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For Better or Cursed

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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

    **3.5-stars rounded up** For Better or Cursed is the second installment to Kate Williams, The Babysitters Coven trilogy. This Comedic Teen series channels heavy Buffy vibes, with a dash of Adventures in Babysitting. Witchy besties, Esme and Cassandra, are back and beginning to settle into their new lives as full-blown Sitters. They're back at school, babysitting and continuing to learn under Coach Brian's tutelage. After their battles in the first book, Cassandra seems to be suffering from some las **3.5-stars rounded up** For Better or Cursed is the second installment to Kate Williams, The Babysitters Coven trilogy. This Comedic Teen series channels heavy Buffy vibes, with a dash of Adventures in Babysitting. Witchy besties, Esme and Cassandra, are back and beginning to settle into their new lives as full-blown Sitters. They're back at school, babysitting and continuing to learn under Coach Brian's tutelage. After their battles in the first book, Cassandra seems to be suffering from some lasting side effects, so they've been trying to figure that out as well. She's blacking out and doing incredibly bizarre things during these spells. The girls think she may have been cursed, so clearly, that's not good. In addition to all of this, they receive news that the Synod, the Sisterhood's governing body, has called a Summit and it's going to be in their hometown. In fact, Esme and Cassandra are responsible for planning the grand finale party for the weekend. They're so not qualified for that. Luckily, Brian's interior design skills and expert social event knowledge are there to save the event. I loved the Summit. It was attended by witches from all over the world. The introduction of some new characters was a lot of fun to read. They all stayed at the same hotel and attended classes where they learned more about Sitting and the many threats facing them. I thought this was a great plot device to build-out the concepts of this world. Incidentally, the girls learning more about Sitting allowed the Reader to learn more right along with them. As with the first book, I loved the humor in this. It's silly, completely ridiculous and over the top, and because of this, a perfect escape from the world. I laughed so many times. Esme's perspective is dry and hilarious. The most insane things happen during the course of this story. There's never a dull moment. The scenes in the hotel room trying to capture the chicken; I was in tears. Overall, I think this series, despite its minor flaws, is highly entertaining. It's not perfect, but if you enjoy spoofy types of humor, you could really enjoy this. As an aside, I did listen to the audiobook and thought the narrator's delivery with the humor was so strong. She definitely added to my enjoyment with her performance! Thank you so much to the publisher, Delacorte Press, for providing me with a copy of this to read and review. I will absolutely be picking up the third book when it releases later this year!

  2. 5 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. 5 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. 4 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. 4 out of 5

    Rya Northrop

    I hate that I love this series so much.

  6. 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.

  7. 4 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.

  8. 4 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.

  9. 4 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!

  10. 4 out of 5

    Audra (ouija.reads)

    I adored The Babysitters Coven, and I was looking forward to seeing what Esme, Cass, and Pig would be up to in this second entry. The upbeat, stylish, and sarcastic Esme is such a fun narrator. The book is often silly and over the top, and I am completely here for it. This book focuses on a summit, where all the Sitters (aka teen witches who fight demons) come together to learn about their kinesis (aka magical powers). Of course, shenanigans ensue and everything goes horribly wrong, leaving Esme I adored The Babysitters Coven, and I was looking forward to seeing what Esme, Cass, and Pig would be up to in this second entry. The upbeat, stylish, and sarcastic Esme is such a fun narrator. The book is often silly and over the top, and I am completely here for it. This book focuses on a summit, where all the Sitters (aka teen witches who fight demons) come together to learn about their kinesis (aka magical powers). Of course, shenanigans ensue and everything goes horribly wrong, leaving Esme and her friends to save Spring River once again. It was fun to meet some other girls with different powers, though I would have liked a bit more characterization for those characters. For me, this book suffered from middle book syndrome, where a lot of the plot feels like it is only happening to set up the finale. So there was a fair amount of fluff, for example: extended scenes with chickens that felt unnecessary and overly long and a new character/love interest who is only in two scenes. Esme bounces around, gathering information in a piecemeal sort of way (most of which does not pan out fully in this book) while ignoring the fairly obvious signs of what is going on at the summit. While it felt a bit all over the place, it was still a fun return to some characters I really enjoyed. I will definitely be reading the next book, Spells Like Teen Spirit, to see how it all turns out!

  11. 5 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Rachel

    I really liked this second book in the trilogy and was quite happy that it was not a kind of lame bridge novel, this novel has some ACTION in it!! As Esme and Cassandra are forced into a weekend Sitter's conference without ever having been to one before and having no idea what to expect, it becomes an adventure! And of course, scandal unfolds! I really enjoyed this novel and it was crazy with the twists and turns and definitely finished with me having a lot questions and I want the next novel righ I really liked this second book in the trilogy and was quite happy that it was not a kind of lame bridge novel, this novel has some ACTION in it!! As Esme and Cassandra are forced into a weekend Sitter's conference without ever having been to one before and having no idea what to expect, it becomes an adventure! And of course, scandal unfolds! I really enjoyed this novel and it was crazy with the twists and turns and definitely finished with me having a lot questions and I want the next novel right now!!! So great and I would highly recommend this!

  15. 5 out of 5

    Mel

    As far as sequels go.... this did NOT disappoint! 🤗 There was just as much chaos and magic and general ridiculousness AND a third installment has been confirmed for the end of 2021. Esme & Cassandra have become quite efficient in their work as babysitters— not in watching over young charges, Cassandra wasn’t cut out for that, but in returning the baddies that find their way out of the Negative to threaten the mortals of their small Kansas town. Just as they’ve established a routine though, their As far as sequels go.... this did NOT disappoint! 🤗 There was just as much chaos and magic and general ridiculousness AND a third installment has been confirmed for the end of 2021. Esme & Cassandra have become quite efficient in their work as babysitters— not in watching over young charges, Cassandra wasn’t cut out for that, but in returning the baddies that find their way out of the Negative to threaten the mortals of their small Kansas town. Just as they’ve established a routine though, their Counsel let’s them know that with less than a week’s time they have to prepare for a Summit, a large gathering of babysitters. They’re not the party types and couldn’t care less about planning one, not to mention the fact that it seems like Esme’s dad might be having money troubles, oh and Cassandra is experiencing “episodes” that may mean she’s been recently cursed. They try to lie and manipulate their way through Summit as they look for a way to remove curses without dabbling in the forbidden Red Magic, while also keeping themselves and their loved ones safe despite the escalating presence of demons and friends that seem to be descending onto the hotel full of babysitters... There’s a wild ride to be had here. 💥

  16. 5 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

  17. 5 out of 5

    Tiffani Reads

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

  18. 4 out of 5

    Amanda

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

  19. 5 out of 5

    Avid Reader and Geek Girl

    2.5 stars

  20. 5 out of 5

    Anna

    There were a couple of parts in the beginning that kind of annoyed me, but I really enjoyed the second half of the book.

  21. 4 out of 5

    trishla ⚡ | YourLocalBookReader

    3 stars. So right before this book was published I had just listened and binge read the first book so I was PUMPED to see that the second was had just dropped but like...it doesn't feel the same? Janis was basically delegated to a side character and like 10 new names and plots were dropped on us so fast. The fun campyness of Spring River was barely in the story. Even the ending left us with SO many plot holes. The entire book felt more like a middle book plot fodder to lead to the next book in t 3 stars. So right before this book was published I had just listened and binge read the first book so I was PUMPED to see that the second was had just dropped but like...it doesn't feel the same? Janis was basically delegated to a side character and like 10 new names and plots were dropped on us so fast. The fun campyness of Spring River was barely in the story. Even the ending left us with SO many plot holes. The entire book felt more like a middle book plot fodder to lead to the next book in the series. I missed the daily fashion moments between Janis and Esme. I missed the awkwardness of her and her dad's relationship. I think that because this book's timeline was under 5 days (basically) the timing felt super off to me. Additionally the "big baddie" motive felt super off to me. Maybe it's supposed to make you think about how bureaucracy ruins things but the Synod just being corrupt or okay with corruption was super weird and not believable? Especially from the impression they made in the first book. Find me on: instagram

  22. 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.

  23. 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?

  24. 4 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.

  25. 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.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Jenna Freedman

    The follow up to The Babysitters Coven takes a little longer to get into than the first entry in the series, but eventually it becomes compelling. The two Sitters, protagonist Esme and her slaying partner Cassandra (daughter of Circe) have attracted the attention of the ruling body, the Synod, and find themselves playing host to a Sitters convention, which is unexpected, given their non-dynamic location: Spring River, Kansas. The other Sitters arrive from NYC, Miami, and other cities, everyone d The follow up to The Babysitters Coven takes a little longer to get into than the first entry in the series, but eventually it becomes compelling. The two Sitters, protagonist Esme and her slaying partner Cassandra (daughter of Circe) have attracted the attention of the ruling body, the Synod, and find themselves playing host to a Sitters convention, which is unexpected, given their non-dynamic location: Spring River, Kansas. The other Sitters arrive from NYC, Miami, and other cities, everyone descending on a Zombified hotel. The Synod don't like to be remembered, so they brainwash people--for their own good, including Esme's bestie, Janis. In addition to dealing with her Sitter duties, Esme has some family matters on her mind: her dad is depressed, and the electricity has gone out at home--theirs is the only house so effected. Her mom is still catatonic in a care facility. Since Esme learned in book one that her mother's catatonia is physical only, and that she's still alive inside and aware of everything going on, the situation feels all the more devastating. It's time for Cassandra and Esme to learn about curses, and the dreaded Red Magic. To help them they have their Counsel (a la Buffy's Watcher), Brian, who is increasingly frustrated with the young womens' lack of interest in their training and their frivolity regarding the conference. It's not like the interior designer wanted to be assigned to be a football coach in Kansas or make friends with Esme's downer dad. The perks (magic) are nice though. Same goes for Adrian, a mysterious guy Esme suspects is following her. Turns out she's right, and he's got a strange power that isn't revealed until nearly the end of the book.

  27. 4 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” ;-)

  28. 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.*

  29. 5 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.

  30. 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.

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