Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Salem Witches Week: YA Fiction

This is quite a popular subject in YA Fiction.  I worked my way through three of the Young Adult offerings that featured the Salem Witches.

by:  Celia Rees
published by:  Candlewick
publish date:  April 2002

Mary's grandmother is executed for witchcraft, and Mary is forced to leave her home to avoid the same fate. At first she flees to the English countryside, but when the atmosphere of superstition and suspicion becomes all consuming she leaves on a boat for America in the hope that she can start over and forget her past. But during the journey, she realizes that the past is not so easy to escape.

by:  Anna Myers
published by:  Walker Books
publish date:  September 2009
An orphan named Drucilla has finally has a place to call home with the Putnam family in Salem. Although her adopted mother is strange—haunted by a troubled past—Dru feels drawn to her as the mother she never had. When a new reverend and his family move into town with their servant Tituba, life takes a strange turn as young girls begin to fall ill and accusations of witchcraft begin to swirl. Reluctant to turn her back on the Putnams or her peers and overwhelmed by the power of groupthink among the other girls in town, Dru becomes one of the accusers herself. But when her best friend Gabe is accused, she must find a way to end the hysteria, or risk losing him forever.

by:  Kathryn Lasky
published by:  Scholastic
publish date:  1996

When, in the winter of 1691, accusations of witchcraft surface in her small New England village, twelve-year-old Mary Chase fights to save her mother from execution.

Can't get anymore succinct than that, can you??
Of these three books, Time of the Witches was probably my favorite.  I felt like it gave the most information while at the same time was the most enjoyable to read.  I also felt like it really emphasized the mass hysteria aspect of the whole tragedy. 
Witch Child was my second favorite of the three.  I liked the natural remedy aspects and how healer women were unnecessarily persecuted. 
Beyond the Burning Time wasn't a bad book by any means.  I just couldn't get into it for some reason.  Maybe I was on overload by the time I got to it or something?  It was similar to Time of the Witches, but it didn't read quite as well to me.  I wouldn't say you shouldn't read it because it was in the required reading section of the library and it got there for a reason.  It just wasn't my particular cup of tea.


Phantom Paragrapher said...

Another great one to read is Wicked Girls by Stephanie Hemphill.
Old Follower

SusieBookworm (Susanna) said...

I've read both Beyond the Burning Time and Witch Child and found both to be excellent. If Time of the Witches beats both of those, then I will definitely have to read it.

Sarah said...

Oh! Witch Child! I remember reading that when it first came out.. in 8th grade? I don't know - it was a long time ago. But I know that I loved it :)

That Bookish Girl