The Best Kind of Magic
Release Date: May 16, 2017
Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal, Fantasy
Amber Sand is not a witch. The Sand family Wicca gene somehow leapfrogged over her. But she did get one highly specific magical talent: she can see true love. As a matchmaker, Amber's pretty far down the sorcery food chain (even birthday party magicians rank higher), but after five seconds of eye contact, she can envision anyone's soul mate.
Amber works at her mother's magic shop--Windy City Magic--in downtown Chicago, and she's confident she's seen every kind of happy ending there is: except for one--her own. (The Fates are tricky jerks that way.) So when Charlie Blitzman, the mayor's son and most-desired boy in school, comes to her for help finding his father's missing girlfriend, she's distressed to find herself falling for him. Because while she can't see her own match, she can see his--and it's not Amber. How can she, an honest peddler of true love, pursue a boy she knows full well isn't her match?
The Best Kind of Magic is set in urban Chicago and will appeal to readers who long for magic in the real world. With a sharp-witted and sassy heroine, a quirky cast of mystical beings, and a heady dose of adventure, this novel will have you laughing out loud and questioning your belief in happy endings.
Hello Crystal! We are super excited to have you in our FFBC tours.
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. It was the first book that made me want to be a writer.
Favorite TV show?
Buffy the Vampire Slayer, with Veronica Mars in a very close second.
I love the Pride and Prejudice remake with Kiera Knightly. It is such a beautiful adaptation of one of my favorite stories.
“Since U Been Gone” by Kelly Clarkson is still my karaoke jam.
Ice cream, preferably Ben and Jerry’s
Name 3 fictional places you would move to in a heartbeat.
Hogwarts (obvs), Neverland, Stars Hollow
What were your favorite books growing up? (I was a Fear Street girl!)
I loved anything by Roald Dahl and Beverly Cleary, and read all The Babysitter’s Club books. When I got a little older, I tore through the Goosebumps series, which makes me laugh because now I can’t handle anything scary!
“Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don’t matter, and those who matter don’t mind.” Dr. Seuss
What are your fandoms?
Disney, Buffy, and Harry Potter are forever cemented in my fangirl heart. In the past few years I’ve gotten into comics more, and a recent obsession is Squirrel Girl.
Who is your favorite fictional boyfriend (or girlfriend)?
Peeta Mellark—that boy will keep you safe AND bake you bread. Done and done.
Could you tell our Book Addicts a little bit about THE BEST KIND OF MAGIC?
This story is about Amber Sand, whose family line dates back to Salem, but she herself is not a witch. She did get one very specific magical talent though, in that she can actually see true love. Amber is a matchmaker, but her life is not all turtle doves and happy endings. Her Cupid’s arrow gets her in trouble quite often, but no matter what, she never gives up fighting for what she believes in.
I love books/movies/TV shows with a magical element to them. What is your favorite movie or TV show or song that has the witches and/or magic in them?
Buffy was the first show to bring out the fangirl in me, and it opened me up to the magical world in a new way. Before watching this show, it always seemed like mystical creatures could only exist in the past or in far away lands, but these were real people learning to live with supernatural consequences in their everyday lives. Willow’s journey with witchcraft and Buffy’s struggle with her slayer powers definitely shaped aspects of The Best Kind of Magic, as Amber and her best friend, Amani, both have their own conflicts with their magical abilities.
Besides reading, writing, and blogging, I love fashion!! How would you describe Amber’s style?
Amber’s style is very low key: t-shirts, jeans, sneakers. Most of the time she’s either wearing her school uniform or something that’s work appropriate, so she doesn’t spend much time thinking about how she’s dressed. Her standout style point is her hair, which she’s dyed with peacock blue and green streaks.
How did you come up with the story? Did you find inspiration in any other story/movie/show and how has this affected your writing?
Without a doubt, Buffy is a huge influence for me, not only for the stuff about monsters and magic, but also the group dynamic of the Scooby gang. I really wanted Amber’s mystical community to feel authentic, and to showcase the different relationships and dynamics of what it means to have a gift like no one else. Harry Potter, The Vampire Diaries, and Emma also played in here; watching a matchmaker pair up couples in an enchanting world is definitely a mash up of my love of romance and magical realism.
Tell us your favorite quote from THE BEST KIND OF MAGIC.
“Only crazy people and Satan don’t like frosting.” – Amber J
Is there a specific scene that you had the most fun to write? Or which part was the most difficult to get through?
Any scene where Amber gets to show off her sassy personality was fun for me since I could live vicariously through her funny one-liners, but one of my favorite scenes was during a dance party at Navy Pier, where she works. Although Amber has no problem intervening on other people’s love lives, she’s very guarded with her own, so when a boy she’s having complicating feelings for asks her to dance, she isn’t quite sure what to do. I like this point of the story because she starts letting her guard down, and we begin to see a different side.
Are there any recommendations you could give your readers to be in the “perfect mood” to read THE BEST KIND OF MAGIC (specific music, snacks…)?
Amber aspires to be a professional baker, so there are many mentions of pastries and treats throughout the book. I spent a lot of time looking up recipes and sampling different desserts while I was writing (it’s a tough job, but someone’s got to do it!). Enjoying a cupcake while turning the pages would be a perfect fit!
What’s next for you?
The sequel, The Sweetest Kind of Fate, debuts February 2018, and I am always scribbling away on new story ideas. J
Thank you so much for everything, Crystal!
Thank you so much for featuring my book! It means so much to me! J - Crystal
Follow The Best Kind of Magic by Crystal Cestari Blog Tour and don't miss anything! Click on the banner to see the tour schedule.
With rainbows in my hair and stories in my head, I am a writer drawn to magic in the everyday world.
My debut novel, The Best Kind of Magic, arrives May 16, 2017 from Hyperion. Follow Amber Sand, a magical matchmaker who can actually see true love, as she takes off on a fun and romantic adventure toward happily ever after.