Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Book Review: "The Witch's Trinity"

Set in early sixteenth-century Germany, Erika Mailman's novel The Witch's Trinity (forthcoming from Crown) is a well-written, gripping and chilling account of a witch scare in early modern Europe. Told from the perspective of an elderly woman, I suspect this book gets as close as possible to what living through one of these crises must have been like. As famine tightens its grip on the village and a well-fed friar armed with inquisatorial devices arrives to root out the evil cause and destroy "her," suspicions multiply. The narrator must defend herself, even as her dreams bring her visions and horrors more than sufficient to send her to the stake.

As a look into the minds and perceptions of people who sought supernatural causes for their misfortunes, this novel works well. It's not one of the best I've read this year, but I would recommend it nonetheless.