Witch is historical fiction aimed at young adults, but can be enjoyed by readers of all ages. The story follows Evey, a young girl tasked with looking after her younger sister before the two of them witness their mother’s murder at the hands of witch hunters. Throughout the book, she learns about her own power and the importance of family.

As Evey’s desire for revenge overcomes her promise to her mother, she struggles to keep her promise and instead leaves her sister behind, while she goes after the men who killed her mother.

Finbar Hawkins has written the dialect exactly the way you would imagine the characters talking, and this helped to bring them to life and gave me a feel for the time this was set in. He also managed to achieve a good balance between telling the story which involves violence and death, and keeping it readable for the young adult market without dumbing things down.

Although the book is clearly fiction, I found it interesting to read, knowing that some parts – such as the way women were persecuted and accused of being witches, were based on factual events. I’ve always had a strong interest in this subject. Another thing I admired about the book was all the strong female characters.

There were a couple of parts in the book where I had to reread a paragraph or two because I wasn’t sure what had just happened. It felt like those scenes would play out much better if the book was made into a film, but they didn’t work quite as well on the page.

As far as I can tell, this is a standalone book, which is a shame because I would have loved to read more about Evey and the other characters she meets.

Witch can be purchased here

Amanda Steel is the co-host of Reading in Bed on Anchor, and the author of Ghost of Me, which was a top 10 finalist in the 2020 Author Elite Awards.

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