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  • The Manningtree Witches

  • By: A. K. Blakemore
  • Narrated by: Sofia Zervudachi
  • Length: 12 hrs and 44 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars (41 ratings)

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Summary

England, 1643. Parliament is battling the King; the war between the Roundheads and the Cavaliers rages. Puritanical fervour has gripped the nation, and the hot terror of damnation burns black in every shadow.

In Manningtree, depleted of men since the wars began, the women are left to their own devices. At the margins of this diminished community are those who are barely tolerated by the affluent villagers - the old, the poor, the unmarried, the sharp-tongued. Rebecca West, daughter of the formidable Beldam West, fatherless and husbandless, chafes against the drudgery of her days, livened only by her infatuation with the clerk John Edes. But then newcomer Matthew Hopkins, a mysterious, pious figure dressed from head to toe in black, takes over The Thorn Inn and begins to ask questions about the women of the margins. When a child falls ill with a fever and starts to rave about covens and pacts, the questions take on a bladed edge.

The Manningtree Witches plunges its readers into the fever and menace of the English witch trials, where suspicion, mistrust and betrayal ran amok as the power of men went unchecked and the integrity of women went undefended. It is a visceral, thrilling book that announces a bold new talent.

©2021 A. K. Blakemore (P)2021 A. K. Blakemore

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

accents were off-putting

being from Essex I found the accents distracting and over the top. Essex residents in this era (particularly ones living in North Essex) would have a Norfolk type accent, far more country than the excessively cockney shrill that was occurring on this audiobook. That combined with the author's equally excessive verbosity made it sound like I was being read to by Russell Brand! The voice she chose to do for Matthew Hopkins was absurd as well. I limped through this book that felt far longer than it is and only because it was chosen for my book club.

2 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Slow burner, endured more than enjoyed

this is optional here is your 15 word word word word word word word words

1 person found this helpful

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Brilliant story and excellent narration

Loved it, perfect in every way. Brilliant story and excellent narration. so much talent on display. living in the area it created an even more atmospheric picture of the dread of the times.

1 person found this helpful

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Loved it

Beautiful language, performed wonderfully. I thoroughly enjoyed the narrative and would recommend this book strongly.

1 person found this helpful

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Good entertainment based in history.

If interested in creative approaches to history, women and witchcraft and want a really good listen, then this is for you.