Which Witch? by Eva Ibbotson

Welcome to Paperback Throwback. Each week, I highlight a book from my ever-growing collection of older paperbacks, ‘90s and prior. Come check out everything from Zebra’s line of horror to Scholastic’s preteen Apple Paperbacks, and everything in between— you’ll know them by their stylishly cheesy covers, flashy plots, and cheap prices.

Join me on this stroll down Literary Memory Lane. Stops include Sweet Valley High, Fear Street, and anywhere else mass market paperbacks may be lurking.

Today’s selection will show which witch is which.

The Book

Arriman the Awful feels it’s time he was married, so he devises a plan to snag a bride in the only way a wicked and powerful wizard can— a sorcery competition! As the nastiest witches begin arriving for the contest, Belladonna is worried. All of her spells are rather … well, sweet. If only she could conjure something truly devious…

Some Thoughts

This book was one of my favorites growing up. Witches. A magic competition. A pet worm named Rover. Honestly, this book has everything.

The genius of Eva Ibbotson is that her works have a timeless quality, with the depth of a middle grade novel but the quaintness of a fairy tale. Which Witch? follows this method. The story is simple— a great and powerful wizard seeks a wife. However, it’s peppered with a rich and quirky cast of characters that breathe hilarious life into these pages while also exploring concepts of self-worth.

Plus, the witches have names like Ethel Feebag and Mother Bloodworth. Genius.

Title: Which Witch?
Eva Ibbotson
Publisher: Macmillan Children’s Books
Publication Date: 1979
Classification: Fantasy, Middle Grade

Publisher’s Page | Goodreads


  1. What a fun book. I have vague recollections of it floating around our house at one point. Well, not literally floating, but at our house that wouldn’t necessarily have been out of the realm of possibility. 😉 Terrific review!! If you loved these books as a kid, you should read The Familiars now. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s