The Witch Child
By Celia Rees
Summary: When her grandmother is accused and found guilty of witchcraft, 14-year-old Mary flees to the Americas on a ship full of Puritans wanting to rid themselves of the world’s sin. Trying to be vigilant and not found out, Mary is taken in by a widowed healer in the community. But things are difficult to keep hidden in this new community, and when strange things start to happen people turn to the outsider of the group, Mary. How long can she hide her true nature, and when so far from home, where will she go if they find out the truth.
Review: The Witch Child is a polished novel that provides a full picture tale of what it was like for some people in Mary’s situation. Despite the small size of the book, Mary’s journey is detailed and precise. Readers get to see what it was like not only in the colony, but also on the passage from England. This unique perspective added an extra dimension to the novel. Mary herself was an interesting and likable character, easy to relate to despite the historical setting. Readers will be swept into her tale and feel as if they too are always on the verge of being discovered, as there was a lot of suspense. The only downside was that it had a bit of a slow beginning. A great choice for reluctant readers, teens looking for a book for an assignment or just those interested in historical fiction.
Also by Celia Rees: Pirates!, Fools Girl and Sovay
If you liked The Witch Child, you might also enjoy: The Sacrifice by Kathleen Duble, The Minister’s Daughter by Julie Hearn and Wicked Girls by Stephanie Hemphill
Additional Info: If you liked The Witch Child and want to know what happens to Mary, there is a sequel called Sorceress.
Non Fiction Connection: The Salem Witch Trials by Lori Lee Wilson
Author website: http://www.celiarees.com/index.html
Cover Art: 2/4
Grade Level: J