Dark Spell

Gill Arbuthnott

Out of print

Quick Look

  • 15-year-old Callie has just found out she's a witch; nothing will ever be the same.
  • Can Callie control her power and the darkness that threatens to take over her life and save Josh?
  • A brilliant, engrossing pre-teen fantasy from the author of Winterbringers and The Keeper's Daughter.

15-year-old Callie Hall has found out she's a witch. Can she control her power long enough to turn back the darkness, and rescue her relationship with Josh?

Floris Books
Age Range:
From 11 to 14 years
224 pages
Publication date:
02 May 2013


Shortlisted for the Scottish Children's Book Awards 2015

15-year-old Callie Hall has just found out she's a witch, and things keep going wrong. Sometimes her mind seems to make things happen, things she can't control. She can set fire to things without a match, and when she's angry people can get hurt.

Her friend Josh understands she's a bit weird, but it's only on a dark and dangerous visit to the tunnels under the ruins of St Andrews' Castle that he realises just how strange she really is. Something comes back with Callie -- in Callie -- something she can't escape.

Can Callie control her power long enough to send back the darkness, before it takes over her life? And will Josh ever understand her secret?

A brilliant, engrossing teen fantasy from the author of Winterbringers and The Keeper's Daughter.


'This is a modern-day Harry Potter set near a Scottish school in St Andrews... I cannot recommend this book highly enough.'
-- Daily Record Book Club

'All told, a solid 4 stars.'
-- 2 the Point Book Reviews blog

'A coming of age story with a paranormal/witchy twist.'
-- Tome Tender Blog

'The characterisation is excellent, and I particularly like the way Callie is shown struggling to get to terms with her powers which read almost as hormonal energy...This is elegant writing... a pacey, thoughtful, scary, exhilarating read and highly recommended.'
-- The School Librarian (SLA)

'The story is well engineered, and works not only on the superficial level, but on more than one level... I am not surprised that it has won awards. I found myself enchanted by Dark Spell. I enjoyed not only the characters, but also the sense of place the author delivers of the mix of old and new in contemporary Scotland. Gill Arbuthnott conjures a stunning mix of teen angst and magic mixed with just enough danger to scoot you to the edge of your seat. Big thumbs up on this one!' -- Novelspot


Gill Arbuthnott was born and brought up in Edinburgh, but escaped briefly to study in St Andrews and Southampton. She couldn't stay away, however, and now lives in Edinburgh with her family and Leonard the cat. A former biology teacher, she has written several novels for younger children: The Chaos Clock, The Chaos Quest and Winterbringers (all Floris Books), as well as books with Barrington Stoke and The Keeper's Daughter, published by Chicken House.

You can also visit the author's own website at http://gillarbuthnott.wordpress.com


Don't miss the Discover Kelpies website for children with exclusive author interviews, fun stuff and latest gossip on your favourite Scottish stories.


Also available in paperback:
Dark Spell(Paperback edition)

Also by Gill Arbuthnott:
Chaos Clock
Chaos Quest
Winterbringers, featuring Josh and Callie when they were younger

You may also enjoy more darky magical books:
The Daemon Parallel

Just feel like browsing?

Browse our catalogues

Interested in an author?

Discover authors