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Bess Southerns, an impoverished widow, lives with her children in a crumbling old tower in Pendle Forest. Drawing on Catholic ritual, medicinal herbs, and guidance from her spirit-friend Tibb, Bess heals the sick and foretells the future in exchange for food and drink. As she ages, she instructs her best friend, Anne, and her granddaughter, Alizon, in her craft. Anne ultimately turns to dark magic, while Alizon struggles to accept the power she has inherited and dreams of a simpler life. But when a peddler suffers a stroke after exchanging harsh words with Alizon, a local magistrate tricks her into accusing her family and neighbors of witchcraft. Suspicion and paranoia reach frenzied heights as friends and loved ones turn on one another and the novel draws to an inevitable conclusion.
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By nursebettyknitting on 11-08-13
An absolutely wonderful and touching story! Daughters of the Witching Hill brought tears to my eyes...Terry Donnelly is great as always - she is one of my favorite narrators. It was fascinating for me to understand this piece of 17th century's English history and culture. I am amazed how these poor unfortunates were able make a living using divination, begging and fear. Not a good living, but a temporary reprieve from hunger and cruelty of the surrounding world. Robbed of comforting catholic rituals and left with no protection against the powerful, women of the Pendle Hill had to fill the void in their souls and bellies by something - so called witchcraft. Said and uplifting at the same time, "Daughters of the Witching Hill" is well worth your time.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful
By shaisha on 09-07-15
Made me cry!
Is there anything you would change about this book?
most definitely. it was very tedious and focused too much on mundane details and things. I get the impression that the author needed to fill up time to make her book a cute,witchy number of hours/minutes. I feel like a lot of mine was not well spent listening to boring non essentials. this is a book for someone with little to do.
How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?
instead,i would like to mention that the story is very realistic,except for perhaps the long,drawn out time frames of events. I would have put a lot more action into it,which is also more real.
Have you listened to any of Terry Donnelly’s other performances before? How does this one compare?
no, ive never heard Ms.Donnelly perform and therefore was pleasantly surprised. she put a lot into it...her accent and acting and or skills really jump and bring an otherwise boring book to life. I love her,shes got a fan.yes
Do you think Daughters of the Witching Hill needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?
yes,could be nice,entertaining,and lucrative. I suggest two,one from the point of view of original main subject working from another realm,right where we left off. this is an original,unique point of reference that is actually very realistic in witch families,but has not been written about much. plus.ive fallen in love with Grand and want to hear from her...BE BLESSED
Any additional comments?
the familiars in the story are good and somewhat realistic,but I would like to hear more about them especially the black bitch...
2 of 2 people found this review helpful