I give this book:
A highly compelling and well researched story, The Heretic's Daughter is about the real life persecutions of an alleged witch, Martha Carrier, and her family that occurred in colonial Massachusetts in the early 1600s during the infamous Salem Witch Trials.
As an actual descendant of the real Martha Carrier, Kent does a tremendous job of telling her ancestor's story, as well as that of the hundreds of other men, women and children who were accused, "tried" and/or executed for supposedly practicing the devil's magic during this historical time of mass hysteria and paranoia.
I actually read this book over spring break while I was on a road trip down south. Toward the end of the trip when I was starting to get a little "vacationed out," I found myself looking forward to the end of each day when I could return to the hotel room and lay in bed just to read this book.
Read any great books lately — historical fiction or otherwise? Tweet me!
In addition to all of the different book reviews I am required to write for my readers' advisory course this semester, I also have to produce two book talk videos of titles from a genre of my choosing. For the first of my book talk videos, I chose the historical fiction bestseller, The Heretic's Daughter by Kathleen Kent.
It's been a while since I've posted a book review on here, and this will surely be one of many during the coming months. In my Readers' Advisory course, we focus on a specific genre each week (historical fiction, mystery, thriller, western, romance, women's fiction, fantasy, horror, sci-fi, mainstream fiction and nonfiction). Each student is required to read two books for each genre – one assigned title read by the whole class, and another selected individually on an individual basis.
As someone who tends to read more historical fiction, mainstream fiction and nonfiction, this class is exposing me to many types of books I have yet to experience. While I'm a little surprised to find myself enjoying mysteries and thrillers, I just haven't bought into the romance or western genres. Regardless, becoming familiar with popular titles of all genres – even those you don't particularly enjoy – is an essential part of being a good librarian.
The first genre the course covered is historical fiction. The required book read by the class was Girl With a Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier (1999), and for the title of my choosing I picked Lisa See's Snow Flower and the Secret Fan (2005). I've read a couple of See's other books (she tends to focus on historical fiction about Chinese women) and have enjoyed them all immensely. Below is my review of Snow Flower and the Secret Fan, which I listened to on audiobook - which I highly recommend!
If you've read other works by Lisa See, Snow Flower and the Secret Fan is sure to live up to the high caliber of writing one can expect from her. For a read-alike suggestion of another book about a young bride’s trials and tribulations set in an exotic location, check out Honolulu by Alan Brennert (2009).
Tessa Fox is the Early Literacy Librarian at the Kenosha Public Library. After working in the journalism and publishing fields, Tessa decided to dedicate her life to books and public librarianship, and went back to school to get her Master's in Library and Information Science from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, where she graduated in December 2016. Tessa has been working in public libraries since 2014. Disclaimer: The views expressed here are mine alone and do not reflect those of my employer.
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