I recently finished Kathleen Kent’s The Heretic’s Daughter and admit to being disappointed. I even waited two weeks since finishing it to write this review in hopes my feelings about it would change. But they did not. It’s incredibly well written and impressively researched (the author is a distant relative of the main character), but I fear I’m ‘witched’ out and could not enjoy this book in the way it deserved to be enjoyed. In 2008 I simply read too many books about witches– Elizabeth Gaskell’s Lois the Witch, Brunonia Barry’s, The Lace Reader, and something else I can’t even remember. I thought I’d love the varying takes on the witch trials, but obviously, they began to run together.
That said, there is no question in my mind that The Heretic’s Daughter is head and shoulders above the other books I read. I wish I’d been able to get a copy of it earlier. I wouldn’t have wasted my time on the others. It’s so much better written and so much more real that it deserves to be read with attention and care. I will absolutely recommend this to others as the first and perhaps ONLY ‘witch’ book they read.