Witches of New York

Witches of New York

Book - 2016
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"The year is 1880. Two hundred years after the trials in Salem, Adelaide Thom (Moth from The Virgin Cure) has left her life in the sideshow to open a tea shop with another young woman who feels it's finally safe enough to describe herself as a witch: a former medical student and gardien de sorts (keeper of spells), Eleanor St. Clair. Together they cater to Manhattan's high society ladies, specializing in cures, palmistry and potions--and in guarding the secrets of their clients. All is well until one bright September afternoon, when an enchanting young woman named Beatrice Dunn arrives at their door seeking employment. Beatrice soon becomes indispensable as Eleanor's apprentice, but her new life with the witches is marred by strange occurrences. She sees things no one else can see. She hears voices no one else can hear. Objects appear out of thin air, as if gifts from the dead. Has she been touched by magic or is she simply losing her mind? Eleanor wants to tread lightly and respect the magic manifest in the girl, but Adelaide sees a business opportunity. Working with Dr. Quinn Brody, a talented alienist, she submits Beatrice to a series of tests to see if she truly can talk to spirits. Amidst the witches' tug-of-war over what's best for her, Beatrice disappears, leaving them to wonder whether it was by choice or by force. As Adelaide and Eleanor begin the desperate search for Beatrice, they're confronted by accusations and spectres from their own pasts. In a time when women were corseted, confined and committed for merely speaking their minds, were any of them safe?"--From publisher.
Publisher: Toronto : Knopf Canada, 2016
Branch Call Number: FICTION MCK
Characteristics: 511 p. ; 22 cm

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Susan the Sketcher Sketches Ami McKay

On November 7, 2018 Halifax Public Libraries' volunteer artist, Susan the Sketcher, ventured to Central Library to capture an evening with Ami McKay on the Scotiabank Author's Stage. Learn more about Susan and her Library adventures at the bottom of this post. Ami McKay was visiting the Library to discuss her latest novel, Half Spent Was the Night: A Witches' Yuletide, the follow-up to her… (more)


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gothiclibrarian Dec 04, 2018

Difficult-to-put-down historic fiction with a focus on feminism and the occult.

If you liked 'Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell' and also like women's stories and literary fiction, you'll likely find much to enjoy within this fascinating novel by Indiana-born Ami McKay (who now lives and writes in Canada).

For those who fall in love with the characters, McKay has released a small sequel entitled 'Half Spent Was the Night: A Witches' Yuletide.'

f
fionajay
Oct 09, 2018

New genre: science witches!

j
jennlowe
Sep 04, 2018

I was drawn right into the book from the first few pages, loving the settings and the characters. Then… It just slowed down. I went on vacation with it 2/3 completed...and barely touched it. That’s unusual for me.

TashD Jan 25, 2018

I loved the descriptive writing on the characters and tea shop. The detail and emotions put into this book made me picture being there. Although the book was a little more ghosty than witchy than I expected I still thoroughly enjoyed it, almost as much as The Birth House!

m
Mmc0119
Dec 14, 2017

This was a really good book with strong female characters and made me want to read her earlier books, the character of Moth is fascinating. Can't wait for the next one.

g
genepy
Nov 08, 2017

The reader is spellbound by this unconventional novel, which is not only a thrilling experience but a learning one as well : a well-documented historical background , a detailed social depiction of the living conditions of unmarried women at the time ( late 19th century ) and of course magical spells and recipes…! the quaint atmosphere of the times and the mystical characters of the story add to its seductiveness.
A perfect concoction for witchcraft lovers only, very entertaining and “enchanting”….

c
chloecat
Apr 26, 2017

Though not my usual genre, and a bit slow at the beginning, I found I really enjoyed this book and the characters. The passions, potents, and nature of witchcraft at the time was interesting.i would definitely recommend, but keep an open mind, and just enjoy the writing,
4/5 stars.

s
Skaidrite
Mar 28, 2017

I enjoyed this book very much and for me it ended too soon. It's for everyone who likes witches and ghosts and goblins.

v
vancouverville
Mar 20, 2017

Very slow first 100 pages, but things picked up after that. Probably enjoyable for those who are into witchcraft and things. The historical New York setting was a nice element.

s
SoHum
Mar 15, 2017

A big disappointment after her other books. Really frothy!

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SPL_Brittany Nov 14, 2016

Beloved and bestselling novelist Ami McKay returns with her most beguiling novel yet, luring us deep inside the lives of three remarkable young women navigating the glitz and grotesqueries of Gilded-Age New York by any means possible, including witchcraft...

Set in New York in the 1880s, the great obelisk, Cleopatra's Needle is slowly making its way through the city. While Egyptomania grips the city, three women, Eleanor, born into witchcraft and taught by her mother; Adelaide Thom ('Moth' from The Virgin Cure) a former sideshow fortune teller who's beginning to understand her true gifts; and Beatrice a young woman seeking her independence, have all experienced the unexplainable. Recognizing that they are stronger together, the three women form a partnership. Their tea shop caters to Manhattan's wealthy society women specializing in cures, palmistry and potions -- while carefully guarding the secrets of their clients. While helping Beatrice expand and understand her gifts, dark forces gather around them and they'll stop at nothing to drive the witches from their midst. Two hundred years after the trials at Salem, in a time when women were committed for merely speaking their minds, were any of them safe?

An atmospheric read, McKay creates a wonderful sense of New York City during this era, and brings all of her characters vividly to life in a clever tale of the power of love, friendship and witchery that will delight the minds of readers. An enjoyable read for fans of Paula Brackston. 

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SCL_Leanne Aug 29, 2017

"Respectable Lady Seeks Dependable Shop Girl. Those averse to magic need not apply."

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