This realistic novelization of the Salem Witch Trials was a joy to read. I often shy from historical fiction, particularly novels in which the author has held close to the true events (as Witten clearly has done), because I usually find them dry and lacking in a clear narrative voice. Witten's novel suffers neither of these defects -- her characters are fully developed with voices that inspire sincere empathy. Witten provides a rational and convincing set of circumstances that could realistically result in the bizarre events that took place in Salem village, while not completely discounting the numinous possibilities that make the event so mysterious and intriguing. Although she takes some liberties with minor events and indulges in creative speculation, the novel nonetheless rang true to the spirit of one of the darkest episodes in American history. Definitely recommended!
Progress toward goals: 74/365 = 20.3%
Books: 13/100 = 13.0%
Pages: 3188/30000 = 10.6%
2010 Book List
cross-posted to 15000pages, 50bookchallenge, and gwynraven