Friday, February 27, 2015

Review: "The Witch Hunter's Tale" by Sam Thomas

Synopsis:  Sam Thomas takes readers back to Puritan England with midwife Bridget Hodgson, hailed by the Cleveland Plain Dealer as “one of the most fascinating detectives in contemporary mystery fiction.”
Winter has come to the city of York, and with it the threat of witchcraft. As women and children sicken and die, midwife Bridget Hodgson is pulled against her will into a full-scale witch-hunt that threatens to devour all in its path, guilty and innocent alike.

Bridget—accompanied once again by her deputy Martha Hawkins and her nephew Will Hodgson—finds herself playing a lethal game of cat and mouse against the most dangerous men in York, as well as her sworn enemy Rebecca Hooke. As the trials begin, and the noose begins to tighten around her neck, Bridget must answer the question: How far will she go to protect the people she loves?

 My Thoughts:  The Witch Hunter's Tale is the third book in Sam Thomas' Midwife Mystery series and so far it is my favorite.  I could not stop reading it!  They just keep getting better and I think he outdid himself with this one!

I am really interested in 'witch hunts' of the past so I found this to be a really compelling story.  Mr. Thomas did a good job of showing how the fear of witches and the unexplainable could permeate society and do great damage to a community.  You could almost feel the fear throughout the story.  I liked how Lady Bridget even believed in witches even though she thought the women accused were innocent.  I think it made the story more authentic to have the main character believing as most of her contemporaries would have.  It was a little shocking at first but overall I did like that. 

The story had a lot of twists and turns and one amazing villain.  I thought Rebecca Hooke was bad but Joseph was the worst.  For a so-called 'man of God' he was pure evil and I just couldn't believe the lengths he went to in order to get more power for himself.  I was very surprised with the way things turned out; I would never have expected it but I think it worked.  That being said, the end was so sad (for me) and I was left with so many questions.  I'm hoping there will be another book after this because I really want some resolution after the events of this one.

Overall, an excellent historical mystery!  4 stars.

About the Author:

Sam Thomas is an assistant professor of history at the University of Alabama in Huntsville. He has received research grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Newberry Library, and the British Academy. He has published articles on topics ranging from early modern Britain to colonial Africa. Thomas lives in Alabama with his wife and two children.

For more information please visit Sam Thomas’s website. You can also find him on Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads.



  1. A new book for me so I really appreciated the review

  2. A very difficult subject. I've really enjoyed visiting York. anne stenhouse


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