Witches Protection Program
Author: Michael Phillip Cash
Title: Witches Protection Program
Rating: One Petal
On the Author's Website: http://michaelphillipcash.com/home
Wes Rockville, a disgraced law enforcement agent, is given one last chance to prove himself and save his career when he's reassigned to a 232 year old secret government organization. The Witches Protection Program.
His first assignment: uncover a billion-dollar Cosmetics company’s diabolical plan of using witchcraft for global domination, while protecting its heiress Morgan Pendragon from her aunt’s evil deeds.
Reluctantly paired with veteran witch protector, Alastair Verne, Wes must learn to believe in both witches and himself.
Filled with adventure, suspense and a rousing good time, Michael Phillip Cash creates a tongue-in-cheek alternate reality where witches cast spells and wreak havoc in modern day New York City.
I received this book as an ARC through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
I did not finish reading this book. I was only able to slog through the first third of the story before I had to put it down and it was so bad that I won't be giving it a second try.
On the surface, the premise for this book is an interesting one. There are two types of witches in the world, the good Davinas and the bad Willas and they are in an ongoing feud. For a reason that was extremely poorly explained, the government is helping the good witches by relocating them to new homes under a form of witness protection. It's a plot that has been done before, but can be a good read if executed properly. This story was not well executed.
I can't decide which part of what I read I disliked more, so I'll just list them in any order. Wes, the main character, is boring, whiny, and stupid. He refuses to even try to learn the world of witchcraft that he is suddenly thrust into. He starts off the story a grown man whining to his father because he failed something important and is being demoted, then spends the next part of the book acting sullen because he didn't get his way. Had the author meant for Wes to come across that way, I could have dealt with it until the attitude faded, but I got the feeling that Cash was trying to get Wes to sound lost and desperate instead of needy and obnoxious; Cash's writing ability was not up to the task.
The next part of the book that I disliked were the giant plot holes. The first page of the book starts with Wes being yelled at for some failure with an old lady. There are no details given about what he failed at doing, how he failed, or even what the assignment was in the first place. Wes is too busy whining about his dyslexia and Cash lets Wes continue instead of reigning him in and providing real description. Details were lacking in every scene of the book that I read.
It was also clear that zero research into police procedure had been done to write this book. Wes failed his first and only assignment, and is immediately threatened with firing. It doesn't work that way in the real world. There are disciplinary actions and demotions, sure, but for a rookie like Wes, nothing as dire as Wes' father (possibly the police chief, but details were never provided) elaborates, at length, on. Then, Wes is shuffled to the office in charge of witches protection. His only training is to watch a five minute infomercial, after which his new boss hands Wes an unfamiliar weapon and immediately takes him out on assignment. There's a big difference between learning on the job and being utterly stupid, and Cash seems intent on making every character in the book sound and act like an unprofessional idiot.
I also noticed a lot of parallels with Men in Black, the movie. I won't say this book was plagiarism, but it's definitely skirting the fine line.
I could keep going, but I've written the major issues and I don't want this review to devolve into a rant. The rest of the problems were more minor, like the fact that the font was huge to the point that it started giving me a headache. The book is being sold for $12.99, a ridiculous price for a paperback (not trade paperback, just regular paperback). I think Cash inflated the number of pages by enlarging the font and adding blank pages between every chapter in order to charge more. It feels like a scam to me.
Stay as far away from this book as you can. It's poorly written, the characters are completely unlikable, the plot poorly fleshed out, and it skirts the line with plagiarism. I cannot recommend this book.
Maggie reviews paranormal and fantasy novels and novellas. She also interviews authors and hosts giveaways.