Young witch flees family abuse, seeks own happy ending

“A multi-layered and intoxicating fantasy that explores the adverse effects of emotional abuse and the courage it takes to break away and pave your own path.” 

-Lenore Borja, author of The Last Huntress”

Greensboro, NC – Wander the world with Georgette and her magical friends in this tender and hopeful fantasy story from award-winning author, Alison Levy. Magic by Any Other Name: The Witch’s Odyssey (Nov 7, 2023, SparkPress) follows one young witch’s difficult decision to leave her toxic family and seek a better life for herself. With the help from a diverse group of magical creatures, Georgette confronts the demons of her past in order to pave a way for a brighter future.

CIBA-winning author of the Daemon Collecting series, Alison Levy returns with a new whimsical and cozy  fantasy series taking readers on an enchanting exploration of the world and within yourself. Loosely based on the heartbreaking yet empowering family decisions Alison made for herself, Georgette’s story will resonate with young readers choosing “no contact” and creating their own found families.

Ivy Nichols O’Reilly has grown up in a wealthy family full of magic, fantasy creatures, and emotional abuse. When her narcissistic mother arranges an unwanted marriage for her, Ivy decides to leave her life of privilege behind and flees across the country with her best friend, a Wood Nymph named Mei-Xing. Along the way, she encounters a number of different magical creatures all on their own journey of purpose. But in order to grow into her new identity, help her new friends, and develop a healthy relationship with a man she’s beginning to care for, Georgette will have to confront the privileges that have shielded her from the pain and ugliness of the magic community in which she was raised—and find the strength to overcome the trauma of her childhood. Perfect for fans of The Secret Society of Irregular Witches.

Magic by Any Other Name

Alison Levy | November 7, 2023 | SparkPress | YA Urban Fantasy 

Paperback | 978-1684632244 | $17.95 

Ebook | B0BQBLLNF9 | $9.95

Alison Levy lives in Greensboro, North Carolina, with her husband, son, and a variety of pets. When she’s not writing or doing mom things, she crochets, gardens, and walks her collies. Find out more on her website.

Follow Alison Levy on social media: 

Facebook: @AlisonLevyAuthor | Twitter: @ALevyAuthor | Instagram: @alevyauthor

Praise for Gatekeeper

Book One in the Daemon Collecting Series

“A compelling, yet endearing, read about a very resourceful inter-dimensional cop Rachel who deals with broken daemons, homeless oracles, linguists, and serial killers with her own style of grace and tenacity. You might not see your own world in quite the same way as you look for the hidden passageways just out of view.”

Ellen Clary, author of Pursuits Unknown: An Amy and Lars Novel

“Alison Levy offers us a lens that penetrates the facade of a recognizable world to reveal a thought-provoking analog. Ideas of right and wrong, intention, human value, and justice are all reconsidered. The story leaves the gate at a dead run and never lets up. Written in a clear and incisive style, Gatekeeper was a pleasure to read, and happily, suggests more to follow.”

Patricia Minger, author of Magic Flute

Gatekeeper is a wickedly fun romp from start to finish, and Rachel Wilde is a fiery protagonist who doesn’t take crap from anyone or anything. In her debut novel, Levy provides an action-packed story with a delightful taste of the immense, unique world-building to come for future books in the series.” 

– Cheryl Campbell, author of Echoes of War

Praise for Blue Flame

Book Two in the Daemon Collecting Series

“Masterful storytelling and exceptional worldbuilding. A unique, action-packed Urban Fantasy series with grit, wit, and a whole lot of heart. Levy has created a truly original series in a genre that doesn’t see much originality these days.”

Lenore Borja, author of The Last Huntress (Mirror Realm Series Book I)

“The Daemon Collecting Series is a great spin on an age-old stereotype. It’s fun, engaging characters will create a fantastical journey without leaving the very world surrounding us.”

– Chanticleer Book Reviews—5 Star

“Startlingly original, Blue Flame provides not only an insightful commentary on our society but also rich, complex characters who will stay with you long after you finish reading.”

– Jen Braaksma, author of Evangeline’s Heaven

In an interview, Alison Levy can discuss:

  • How the author’s own experience of dealing with a narcissistic parent inspired her novel 
  • Why she uses the fantasy genre to tell a story about healing from emotional abuse
  • How reading fantasy was a means of escapism from emotional abuse as child, and now has become her profession as a writer and a primary tool in her healing journey 
  • Why fantasy can reveal real, human truths that realism can’t
  • What she hope readers will learn about taking steps towards their own healing from emotional abuse

An Interview with

Alison Levy

1. What is one takeaway you want readers – particularly those who can relate to Georgette – to have upon completing the novel? 

I’d like readers to understand that a found family is a real family. Blood relations who

make unreasonable demands or mistreat you all in the name of “family” are not entitled

to control your life. It is okay to step away from people who don’t have your best

interests at heart. A true family is not made from DNA, but from love.

2. How do the fantastical elements in your story help you address topics such as family trauma and mental health with a unique perspective?

By telling Georgette’s story through a veil of fantasy, I hoped to emphasize how

alone she feels as she flees her family. Breaking away from an abusive family can be

incredibly isolating, even with a strong support network around you. Because her family

is already separated from general society by their magic, Georgette has even less

connection to the wider world than the average person. Overcoming her upbringing is

that much harder for Georgette since she can’t fall back on typical social safety nets.

3. How did writing help you overcome some of your own personal family trauma?

I started writing this book shortly after my final contact with my narcissistic parent, the

last interaction I had with him before going no contact. It was a difficult, emotional time in my life when I was coming to terms with the fact that a lot of my family relationships were not healthy and never had been. Writing Georgette’s story was a way to help me process what I was going through and help me figure out how to move forward. Georgette is not an autobiographical representation but she shares some key characteristics with me that made her a useful means of exploring my trauma.

4. What are some challenges you faced while writing Georgette’s story?

My book features a diverse cast of characters, drawing on mythologies and

cultures from all around the world. I was very conscious of the fact that I’m a cis white

American woman writing about characters from other ethnicities and backgrounds. I did

a lot of research on related issues and topics to make myself as knowledgeable as

possible while developing these characters. Doing so has led me to confront some

privileges I wasn’t fully aware of for most of my life. I’ve done my best to write my

personal growth into the story.

5. Can you tell us about the relationships Georgette has in the book that help her navigate her healing journey as she works through her family trauma?

Mei-Xing (a Wood Nymph): After Georgette helped Mei-Xing escape from her birth

family, Mei-Xing became her rock, supporting Georgette through this challenging time of her life. Ishak (a Werehyena): Through Ishak, who she initially declined to help in his time of need, Georgette learns to recognize the privileges that her upbringing afforded her.

Nico (a curandero): Nico becomes Georgette’s de facto therapist and is the first person to

give her the terminology she needs to contextualize her abusive childhood. Neil (her love interest): Dating a good man like Neil shows Georgette that not all close

relationships are inherently manipulative. Kazimiera (a Vampire): Georgette’s problematic employer who shows her the dark side of the magic community that her family avoided.

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