The Glamourist by Luanne G. Smith

Having torn through The Vine Witch over the course of a rainy Saturday and been left with the itch for a bottle of nice red and a fat coil knit hygge blanket, I jumped at the chance to read Luanne G. Smith’s second foray into her world of witches. And what a delightful read it was!

To be blunt, The Glamourist is a sequel just as cozy and endearing as it's sister novel and succeeds  on two fronts:

Firstly, The Glamourist hits all the same, satisfying notes as its predecessor; the women are strong, bold and interesting. The world is creatively re-tuned into an alternate turn-of-the-century France successfully navigating the space between the familiar (Montmartre! L’Opera Garnier! The Latin Quarter!) while pulling the curtain further back in the reveal that this is not our own Paris. The men support our leads with an endearing sense of bafflement at the magic they do not understand and for once we have a potential mother-in-law with whom I, for one, would love to share a bottle of champagne.

Secondly, The Glamourist can be read as a stand-alone novel within the greater world of The Vine Witch. While the core cast each appear in The Vine Witch, Smith deftly handles backstory and recaptures the plot of The Vine Witch without a) boring her reader or b) making it feel as if reading The Vine Witch is necessary for one to fully understand her created world*.

This is Yvette’s story, she merely deigns to share the pages with Elena and Jean-Paul as the gracious witchling she is.

To risk spoiler territory, and I will do my best to avoid anything flat-out, The Glamourist touched upon something that my former dancer's heart was so pleased to see being referenced in contemporary fantasy. I long to know if Smith created the character I reference with a knowledge as to the history of a Very Specific Shoe and the Very Specific Role with which it debuted. Nevertheless my bunions and calluses earned from a few years tip-toeing the block myself, were overjoyed with the reference.

*But you should absolutely read The Vine Witch, it is a treasure of a novel


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