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A mysterious gathering of thirteen people is interrupted by local magistrate, Roger Nowell.
Is this a witches’ Sabbat?
Two notorious Lancashire witches are already in Lancaster Castle waiting trial. Why is the beautiful and wealthy Alice Nutter defending them? And why is she among the group of thirteen on Pendle Hill?
Elsewhere, a starved, abused child lurks. And a Jesuit priest and former Gunpowder plotter, recently returned from France, is widely rumoured to be heading for Lancashire. But who will offer him sanctuary? And how quickly can he be caught?
This is the reign of James I, a Protestant King with an obsession: to rid his realm of twin evils, witchcraft and Catholicism, at any price …
“If you like her other novels, you will adore this. She has done her homework… the beauty of the writing, exemplary in its pared-down simplicity. It’s so seductive that by the middle I was hooked.” – Independent
“Sharp-eyed view of history… Winterson is at her best her when she’s dealing with real horrors.” – Observer