ARC Book Review: How to Hang a Witch by Adriana Mathers


ashley | I haven’t read a good witch book in a while, so when I won an advanced copy of Adriana Mathers’ How To Hang A Witch, I was thrilled. It looked equal parts creepy and fascinating and there was already so much buzz about it, I couldn’t wait to read it.

Like every good creepy story, this starts with Sam Mather moving into an old house in Salem, starting at a new school and meeting The Descendants, all direct descendants of the infamous Salem witches, who do not warm to her at all. Sam quickly realizes something is going on as family members of The Descendants start to mysteriously die and she needs to figure it out before she is officially blamed for all the deaths.

I loved this book. Not only was it interesting and fast paced, but it was also very well researched and based on actual events of the Salem Trials, which I’ve always found really fascinating. It also didn’t go unnoticed that author Adriana Mather shared the same last name as Sam and Cotton Mather, the man who is pretty much held responsible for starting the trials in the first place. All of this was very cool and created an almost surreal and intimate connection to the story and the historical references.

I liked the cast of characters here; they were all very moody and you didn’t really know who to trust, but I enjoyed that there was that challenging complexity, it made them having to band together a bit more interesting. Sam had a tough go at things, she was always made out to be the outcast, constantly blamed and tormented for things she couldn’t really explain. But she was so strong to push through and just continue as she had to. It wasn’t easy, but she made do and I really admired that about her. Not a lot of people could put up with what she had to deal with.

I really, really enjoyed Elijah. I thought that he was quite a nice addition and his role really tied everything tightly together which was nice. His budding friendship with Sam really added a nice break to the witches and murder and death, as did his love for his sister, which kind of starts all of this. He was just a great character overall and I liked him far more than I did Jaxon, who was painted as Sam’s romantic counterpart.

I was a little disappointed at figuring out quite early who was the likely culprit behind the mysterious happenings and Mather family curse. I couldn’t exactly figure out why, so that was still a bit of a surprise to me, but I had my suspicions early on and I didn’t really stray from them. That said, it was still interesting seeing it all come together in the end and as a whole, this was a well thought out story that played out nicely. A good modern way to kind of rehash these historical happenings. If you have any interest in Salem or witches in general, I definitely recommend this read, it doesn’t disappoint.


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today! july 26, 2016

copy provided for honest review by
won it from author in advance contest