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Author: Kelly Barnhill Genre:   Type:

This story is a very well written book about a miserable town restricted by fears of the dreaded witch. But is there really a witch? They certainly have never questioned it. They make a living off of the bog which gives them barely enough. Kelly Barnhill does a great job of building up characters and I loved every minute of the long forest journeys, the marvels of the Free Cities, and the ever so depressing tales of the Protectorate. Luna, the main character, faces the consequences of “the tale of the Witch”, while Antain, an elder in training, is haunted by the day Luna was taken away, so he strives to change something. Anything, about this horrible, dreaded witch and what she des. But is the Witch really the one behind it all?


“There is magic in starlight, of course. This is well known. Moonlight, however. That’s a different story. Moonlight is magic. Ask anyone you like.”

A passage between a villager and a village child in which you only know what the adult says:

“Yes. There is a witch in the woods. There has always been a witch.

Will you stop fidgeting for once? My stars! I have never seen such a fidgety child.

No, sweetheart, I have not seen her. No one has. Not for ages.

We’ve taken steps so that we will never see her.

Terrible steps.

Don’t make me say it. You already know, anyway.

Oh, I don’t know, darling. No one knows why she wants children. We don’t know why she insists that it must always be the very youngest among us. It’s not as though we could just ask her. She hasn’t been seen. We make sure that she will not be seen.

Of course she exists. What a question! Look at the woods! So dangerous! Poisonous smoke and sinkholes and boiling geysers and terrible dangers every which way. Rubbish! It was the Witch, and if we don’t do as she says, what will become of us?”

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