Ever since I was a kid, I absolutely loved watching this movie around Halloween. When I bought the book, I was soooo excited. Hocus Pocus will always be a classic that brings the thrills of Halloween to life. In this book, there are two parts. The first part is the original story about Max, Dani, and Allison. The second part follows Poppy – Max and Allison’s daughter – and her friends on Halloween night.
Part One – Salem October 31, 1993
I’m not going to spend much time reviewing this part because everyone has probably seen the movie; however, the version includes a few more details that allows the readers to understand the characters’ motives a bit more. The book also included a few more details that would become relevant in Part Two of the story. The flashbacks to 1693 were spread out through the first part, so it wasn’t just included in the beginning like the movie. I realllllyyy enjoyed reading Part One, and I am going to watch the movie again ASAP. I am giving Part One five stars because I truly loved it. It might have been nostalgia that won me over, but I don’t care it’s still five stars for me.
Part Two – Salem October 31, 2018.
I am going to try to write this review without giving any spoilers. Basically, Poppy’s parents – Max and Allison – had told her the story of what happened 25 years ago, but she was skeptical to believe it. Because of her family’s belief in witchcraft, she always felt a little embarrassed of them. On Halloween night, her parents hosted a Halloween party that she didn’t want to attend. She and her friends snuck out to go to the Sanderson house and play with a spirit board – under a blood moon no less. Obviously, things were bound to go wrong.
In Part Two, there were things I liked and things I didn’t. It seemed way more juvenile than that first part. I understand it’s told in first person POV and the main character is a teenager, but it was still kind of annoying to read certain parts because the immaturity flowed from the dialogue. Despite that, I still liked it well enough. There were some parts of the story, especially when they were fighting the witches over the blood moonstone, that seemed kind of redundant. I mean how many times can you lose the damn thing to just get it back again. It just got a little tedious and annoying after a while. Again, there were parts that I had to push myself to keep reading because it was just irritating for me. Some parts of the story were trying to mirror details in the original, and I felt like it was forced and didn’t flow naturally.
On a more positive note, I liked the premise of the story. It was a twist on the original, and I think it worked for the most part. I just don’t think the plot was executed well enough. It was very fast paced, and there wasn’t really a dull moment. I really like how Part Two included Jay Taylor – the bully from the original version – and he is Poppy’s principal. His daughter, Katie Taylor, is now the bully that Poppy deals with. Okay, I am just going to say it, but how the hell did this guy become a principal? He was such a loser back when he was stealing people’s shoes and candy. I just cannot wrap my head around the fact that he was able to go to college to become a high school administrator. Oh, and by the way, he is Max’s boss now because Max is a history teacher. Seems a bit unrealistic. Which is funny because the book is about bringing witches back from the dead and talking dogs, but I find the high school bully growing up to be a high school principal unrealistic. I see the irony here, lol.
So, Poppy had a love interest throughout the wholeeee book that kind of mirrored her parent’s relationship. She has a crush on Isabella, who seems to be so perfect and amazing.. but there is something strange about her… hmmm? Anyway, the romance is all nice and lovely, but it was another thing that got really annoying, especially when Poppy’s friend Travis is basically trying to push the two together.. And again, he referred to Isabella as Isa-Bae-lla and furthered my irritation with the juvenile details in the book.
Because I had to push myself to keep reading even though I did enjoy most of it, I am only going to give it 3/5 stars. Basically I was just really annoyed with most of the book, but once I got past that it was okay. I didn’t hate it, so that’s why it gets three.
I’m not going to give any spoilers, but….. there might be another one?
If you have read this, let me know what your thoughts were and if you liked it.