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Have a strange slightly bizarre fascination with the Pendle witches of Lancashire When I first read about The Familiars I was led to believe that it was a witch story and somewhat cutesy That is far from the truth This is a story of the women in the surrounding village who eventually were charged with murder and witchcraft at Pendle Hill specifically Alice Gray It is the story of Alice s friendship with Fleetwood and the extreme measures that Fleetwood took in order to save her friend It is a beautifully told story of women devotion love motherhood history and so much but it is very much rooted in historically accurate research At the heart of the tale is Fleetwood and her desire to bring her child into the world safely and alive In order to do so she truly believes she must have Alice by her side It isn t about magic or witchcraft it is about herbs and nowledge passed down from one generation of women to the next As we learn these women were being rounded up far too often because of men who merely wanted them gone for reasons of cheating anger because the women were nowledgeable not unlike what is happening today when intelligent women are mocked in the public arena They were also being hanged because their religion no longer aligned with that of King James Then as now religion was a source of war Isn t it amazing how absolutely nothing has changed after all of this time How we have learned nothing from the pastI absolutely loved the transformation of Fleetwood from silly frivolous socialite to the mature woman willing to fight for her child and her friend Women will do that when they have the right influences to guide them and it was beautiful to see how Alice so uiet and unassuming could give the much needed confidence to Fleetwood not with magic but through friendship and care In the end this is a novel of historical fiction and it stays true to the story Twelve women were charged with witchcraft some were hanged one landed in stocks for a fortnight and one is released This is a wonderful imagining of their story one that I highly recommendThank you to Netgalley Harleuin Mira and StacyHalls for my advanced copy of TheFamiliars Justice means fairness Luck of prejudice I ve always loved Pendle Hill and the stories of the women who were accused of witchcraft during one of the darkest moments in the history of Europe The fascinating legends found a perfect home in Jeanette Winterson s The Daylight Gate a novel full of darkness raw beauty and folklore Stacey Hall s The Familiars is not as vicious as Winterson s masterpiece but it is no less poignant atmospheric and an absolutely beautiful novel fully doing justice to its dark themes of prejudice injustice and sheer violence against women Sadly these are issues that have not been extinguished in our world Centuries later we face the same dangers albeit wrapped in Instagram Twitter Facebook Pinterest I reuested this book because I was in a witchy mood and the concept of feminism and girl power set against the backdrop of the witch trials during the rule of King James appealed to me In case you didn t now King James was all about that witch hunting life He wrote a book called the Demonology and Shakespeare actually wrote Macbeth with witches to appeal to his audience ie King James The witch trials in the United States were terrible but the 100 or so women illed tops pales in comparison to the hundreds of thousands of women who were murdered in the UK on account of being witchesFleetwood is a seventeen years old pregnant and the wife of a lord Theirs was a marriage of convenience she has the money and he basically treats her like The events described in the Familiars by Stacey Halls take place in the year 1612 Fleetwood is 17 years old and lives a lonely existence with her husband of 4 years in a gloomy isolated mansion in northern England She s pregnant but has previously had problems with miscarriages She s anxious to give birth successfully as Richard her husband is desperate for an heir the husband is desperate for an heir The shines a light on the glaring misogyny of the times the exalted status of the midwife and the magic that fills the gaps that scientific nowledge hasn t yet reachedThe mindset and attitudes of 17th century England are cleverly imagined With a lack of doctors and medical now how rural communities depended on wise women and their use of herbs potions and techniues handed down over the years This atmospheric novel looks at how archaic country lore mixed with fea Four surprising witchy gothic also frustrating starsI cannot really believe in this is a debut novel because the story is so well crafted detailed and smartly written Well if it s just first work of this writer I voluntarily like to read her future works So this is two women s amazing fight and friendship story against all ignorance superstition judgmental and biased minds Fleetwood is afraid of losing her baby after three miscarriages at young age she is only 17 She reads physician letter written to her husband and understands this is her last chance to give a *heir to himshe hires alice as midwife who * to himShe hires Alice as midwife who untraditional methods but Fleetwood accepts any help she may get As they unconventional friendship grows King James minions wander around to accuse the innocent women for being witches weeding them out from the communityRising tension boiling anger and atmosphere surrounded by paranoia create doubts on Fleetwood s mind for making a choice about who she could trustSome parts of book makes your blood boil with anger uestion your beliefs and doubts about the people and their way of looking at the world When I search about the meaning of familiar I found out that it meant an animal close to the witches acting like her servant guardian spy protector companion This brings a different ind of meaning to the story and relationship of two womenMostly I liked Fleetwood s change and growing by taking risks acting brave to protect her friend and baby It s well developed informative but still frustrating with the parts show how the ignorance affect people s minds and turned them into mentally blindAs a summary I liked it and I am happy to see upcoming works of the writerbloginstagramfacebooktwitter. Ights of 17th century women and raises the uestion Was witch hunting really women hunting Fleetwood Shuttleworth Alice Grey and the other characters are actual historical figures King James I was obsessed with asserting power over the lawless countryside even woodland creatures or “familiars” were suspected of dark magic by capturing “witches” in reality mostly poor and illiterate wome. .
5 Spellbinding Superbly Written It Pulled Me In A Book that Will Stay with Me for a very long timeThere is only one word to really sum up THE FAMILIARS and that is SpellbindingFleetwood has tried so very hard to have a child but nature has been cruel and she has never carried a baby to full termWell that is until nowFleetwood is pregnant again and is determined that this time round she will do everything she can to protect her babyShe discovers a letter sent to her husband Richard telling him that his wife is not to conceive any children or she will die during childbirth she is simply devastated and doesn t The Seduction Expert (The Seduction Expert know what to doSo when Fleetwood meets Alice in the woods one day she is convinced she can help Fleetwood deliver the baby andeep her alive so she asks Alice for helpBut this partnership isn t going to be easy when Alice is accused of practising Witch CraftBut can Fleetwood eep Alice and her baby safe and give her husband Richard the baby he so desperately wantsTHE FAMILIARS is such a Powerful Heart Breaking and Enthralling read it Pulled me in and Got Under My Skin It s a book that I will remember for a very long timeI simply adored all the Witch references and the eerie yet heart breaking storyline was Compelling yet PoignantIt also has a Gothic feel to it which only added to the spellbinding essenceIt s hard to believe this is a debut novel it s superbly written with Strong Female Lead Characters that were perfectly written and enchantingIf you enjoy Historical Fiction with an eerie gothic feel that has a captivating and powerful plot then you will adore THE FAMILIARSI can t recommend reading this Gorgeous Book EnoughStacey Halls is definitely going on my to watch out for listThank you to Tracy at Compulsive Readers Tours and Zaffre Books for this copy which I reviewed honestly and voluntarilyMy Review is also on my Blog Website What a wonderful Enchanting and captivating novel An unputdownable ripped from real life tale that ept me up late at night Having read Stacy Hall s The Foundling I couldn t wait to get my hands on The Familiars and it certainly didn t disappoint The Familiars is an extremely well written fictionalized account of the Pendle witch trials in 17th century Lancashire EnglandStacy Halls is a journalist and grew up near Pendle Hill She was always fascinated by the Witch trials from a young age Drawn from real life figures her novel tells the story of Fleetwood Shuttleworth a 17 year old Noblewoman who is pregnant for the fourth time She finds herself caught up in the trials when Alice Gray her midwife is accused of witchcraft Fleetwood needs Alice to help her deliver a healthy baby and Fleetwood risks everything to try and help AliceThe author skillfully conjures up the daunting landscape of the country and timeand creates a wonderful sense of time and place and her dialogue is believable and I loved being dropped right back to the 1600s I enjoy historical fiction as it introduces the readers to events in history which otherwise may have been forgotten The 1600 was a bleak time in history for woman and to be accused of witchcraft must have been terrifying and it didn t seem to take much to earn a reputation as a witch back then Stacy Hall s has written a very crisp and beautiful debut and certainly
author that I gad to have add to my favorites list I think readers enjoy historical fiction or books by authors such as Diane Setterfield or Kate Morton may well enjoy Stacy hall novelsI so glad I order hard copies of these books as they will display beautifully on my real life bookshelf The novel is based on true Pendle Hill Witch Trials and most of the characters did exist although it was the Author s imagination that directed actions The story revolves around a noblewoman Fleetwood Shutterworth who is expected to provide her husband with an heir She miscarages several times and one day when pregnant again she meets a local woman Alice Grey who has a Before Watchmen (Before Watchmen: Silk Spectre, knowledge of the herbs and skills which may help Fleetwood during her pregnancy The story seems simple but the Author managed mastefully to create a novel which I couldn t put down There are several themes in the novel which I found interesting position and fate of woman in the early 17th centrury prejudice against wise women which in conseuence led directly to the accusations of witchcraft and then to stake and the role children played during the so called witchhunt A very good atmospheric novel which I would recommend to FH loversMany thanks to Stacey Halls Harleuin Mira and Netgalley for providing me with ARC in exchange for my honest review The Familiars by Stacey Halls is a 2019 Mira publicationVery impressive debut novel Fleetwood Shuttleworth is once with child hoping this time she will be able to give her husband Richard the heir he is so desirous of But when she stumbles across a letter written to her husband from a physician warning him that if Fleetwood should once find herself in childbed she would not survive Toeep herself and unborn child from certain death Fleetwood hires the midwife of her choosing a young woman named Alice Grey Fleetwood nows that Alice s methods are unconventional but she is desperate willing to try anything But when Alice is accused of witchcraft Fleetwood will do whatever it takes to free Alice but time is of the essence I loved this book This is the style of Gothic mystery that I first fell in love with This debut author has done an outstanding job of creating a heavily laden atmosphere of suspense casting doubts in all directions and pitting our heroine against those she should be able to trust against society and against time The fever pitch anxiety and furor which permeated the air during the real Pendle Hill Witch Trials creates the perfect backdrop for the danger paranoia and suspicions surrounding Fleetwood Using real life characters in the book is a nice touch adding a nice theoretical solution *to an age old mystery Other real life props and events are *an age old mystery Other real life props and events are throughout the novel capturing the atmosphere of the times perfectly The story is a Gothic lover s dream with the suspense building and building becoming nearly unbearable But the story is also. Young Fleetwood Shuttleworth a noblewoman is with child again None of her previous pregnancies have borne fruit and her husband Richard is anxious for an heir Then Fleetwood discovers a hidden doctor’s letter that carries a dire prediction she will not survive another birth By chance she meets a midwife named Alice Grey who promises to help her deliver a healthy baby But Alice soon stands ac.
an author that I gad to have add to my favorites list I think readers