Monday, 6 March 2017

Blog Tour: The Witchfinder's Sister by Beth Underdown

Today on Laura's little book blog, it is my stop on the tour for the compelling and harrowing The Witchfinder's Sister by Beth Underdown. As part of the tour I have my review to share with you and don't forget to follow along the tour with the awesome blogs listed below!
It's been a little while since I read a historical novel and found it as compelling I did The Witchfinder's Sister, also the fact that it was based on a true story made this all the more morbidly fascinating and I found it so hard to put down.

Beth's writing was just absolutely outstanding. She so cleverly sets the time and place of the book and she quickly transported me to the 17th century. I am aware that during that time period many women were persecuted for being witches, but Beth has brought to life the reality of it.

The Witchfinder's Sister is told from Alice's point of view, the sister of Matthew Hopkins who is based on a real person during that era and linked with so many deaths of women accused of being witches. Alice has had to come back to Manningtree since her husband's death and has gone back to live with her brother as being a woman she was unlikely to get work and had no money. Alice is aware that things are not quite right in the town and that it concerns her brother Matthew. She soon becomes part of something horrific that she cannot escape from and being a woman has very little power to stop.

Although The Witchfinder's Sister is a fictional story, Beth has very cleverly woven it around real life facts and so much so that I found this story scarily believable. It does make for difficult reading as it was shocking to learn what these poor women had to go through and how quick people were to jump on them to find blame. Not surprisingly I found Matthew a despicable and evil man who self-appointed himself as the witch hunter for the 'greater good'.  Alice's voice on the other hand really shone through and she became a character that you could easily connect with. I really did feel like it was actually Alice telling us her story and I was just enraptured the whole way through.

This book made me so angry in places. Women were just treated abysmally and regarded as if they were not clever enough to have their own minds. I felt so keenly the frustration and unjustness of the time and I hated what women had to go through.

It is clear from Beth's writing just how much research she has put into this, which is why the story felt as believable as it did. It very quickly became a story that I could not tear myself away from; it is just that immersive and I finished it a lot sooner than I thought I would.

An outstanding and completely enthralling story from Beth Underdown. She has awakened my love for historical fiction.


The Witchfinder's Sister is out now

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