Mostly cast as the villain, often without rhyme or reason as to why, witches have always seemed so mysterious. They are the opposite of damsels in distress, Sleeping Beautys, Cinderellas, Snow Whites. They are mistresses of their own fortunes. They have the power to change lives – their own and others’. They have magic.

Our Author Takeover this month is dedicated to everyone headed to university/college this autumn/fall! It comes from Brit authors Lucy and Tom, whose novel "Freshers" is all about that first transitional year. In particular, the benefits of fandom and clubs for finding your people.

Our Author Takeover for July comes from Aisha Bushby, a debut author and Potterhead whose short story "Marionette Girl" is published next month in "A Change Is Gonna Come" from Stripes. #ChangeBook is an anthology of stories and poetry from BAME writers on the theme of change.

Our May Author Takeover is by Cat Clarke, whose latest YA novel, "Girlhood", is a darkly compulsive story about love, death, and growing up under the shadow of grief. Set in a boarding school in Scotland, the familiar halls are the perfect place for "Potter" fans to escape to in this compulsive, addictive read. Yet there are some sinister secrets that threaten to tear friendships apart.

Our April Author Takeover features Aliette de Bodard talking about something the "Potter" fandom knows all about: warring Houses. Join Aliette as she discusses her own House wars and the continuation of the beautiful "Dominion of the Fallen" series.

Our new Author Takeover comes from New York Times–bestselling author of "The Lunar Chronicles" Marissa Meyer, with her new novel, "Heartless". The "Potter" fandom knows all about characters with a predetermined fate, and we're well used to the idea of the Chosen One. In Marissa's "Heartless", we have a vision of Wonderland like none you've seen before.

When Mary Adams sees Millais’ depiction of the tragic Ophelia, a whole new world opens up for her. Determined to find out more about the beautiful girl in the painting, she hears the story of Lizzie Siddal – a girl from a modest background, not unlike her own, who has found fame and fortune against the odds. Mary sets out to become a Pre-Raphaelite muse, too, and reinvents herself as Persephone Lavelle.

The first of our March Author Takeovers comes from Gemma Fowler. Her new novel, "Moonlight", is an edge-of-your-seat sci-fi thriller with a contemporary voice. Gemma would be pleased as punch to find herself on the highest tower of Hogwarts. Her soul is still and always will be 13 years old, and her characters embrace teenage rebellion and refusal to blindly comply with authority, much like our Golden Trio.

Our final February Author Takeover comes from Lisa Williamson, whose second novel, "All About Mia", is out now from David Fickling Books. In this standalone after her first book, "The Art of Being Normal", Lisa now turns to look at family dynamics and the structure of sibling personality types.

Just imagine: what would your year look like if you read only marginalized authors? What would the world look like if we all did the same? And how many books do you read each year, anyway? If it’s more than 30, I challenge you to pick up every one of these. I know you can do it!

Book Review: Sarah, Plain and Tall by Patricia MacLachlan
Book Reviews / September 29, 2004

From this author of many children’s picture books and several young readers’ novels comes this 1986 winner of the Newbery Medal. It is a short novel, quickly read, yet one that you may want to savor. For not only is it a sweet story, but it is told with exceptional beauty.

Book Review: It’s Like This, Cat by Emily Neville
Book Reviews / September 29, 2004

The 1964 winner of the Newbery Medal is a loose, light-hearted story that shows us a slice out of an ordinary kid’s life in Manhattan in the 1960’s. Written in the present tense and first person singular, it seems to capture effortlessly the way of speaking of a city youth at a point in his life when many changes are taking place.

Book Review: Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Patterson
Book Reviews / September 23, 2004

This is a 1972 Newbery Medal winner about a misfit farm boy in Virginia who befriends the tomboyish city girl who moves in next door, and how they invent an imaginary kingdom together. The one complaint I have about this book is that there could have been so much more of it; it seems to go way too fast. It is a breathlessly lyrical moment of beauty where one would like to linger for a while, but it’s over so soon.

Book Review: Ralph S. Mouse by Beverly Cleary
Book Reviews / September 11, 2004

The third book in the series that began with The Mouse and the Motorcycle, and continued with Runaway Ralph, takes off when Ralph befriends the son of the hotel’s new housekeeper. Ryan agrees to take Ralph to school with him, but things turn out as neither of them planned.

Book Review: Runaway Ralph by Beverly Cleary
Book Reviews / September 11, 2004

The sequel to The Mouse and the Motorcycle finds Ralph the mouse growing discontented in his hotel lobby home. His younger brothers, sisters, and cousins keep pestering him to let them ride his toy motorcycle, and his mother and uncle won’t leave him alone. Finally Ralph decides to runaway to a camp whose bugle calls he can hear every morning and evening.