Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Review of The Silver Witch by Paula Brackston and Giveaway - April 15, 2015

The Silver Witch
Author: Paula Brackston
Publisher:  Thomas Dunne Books, April 21, 2015
Format:  Hardcover and eBook, 320 pages
List Price:  $25.99 (print)
ISBN:  9781250028792 (print)
Review Copy:  Provided by the Publisher

A year after her husband's sudden death, ceramic artist Tilda Fordwells finally moves into the secluded Welsh cottage that was to be their new home. She hopes that the tranquil surroundings will help ease her grief, and lessen her disturbing visions of Mat's death. Instead, the lake in the valley below her cottage seems to spark something dormant in her - a sensitivity, and a power of some sort. Animals are drawn to her, electricity shorts out when she's near, and strangest of all, she sees a new vision; a boatful of ancient people approaching her across the water.

On this same lake in Celtic times lived Seren, a witch and shaman. She was respected but feared, kept separate from the community for her strange looks. When a vision came to her of the Prince amid a nest of vipers she warned of betrayal from one of his own. Prince Brynach both loved and revered her, but could not believe someone close to him wished him harm, even as the danger grew.

In her own time, Tilda's grief begins to fade beside her newfound powers and a fresh love. When she explores the lake's ancient magic and her own she discovers Seren, the woman in her vision of the boat. Their two lives strangely mirror each other's, suggesting a strong connection between the women. As Tilda comes under threat from a dark power, one reminiscent of Seren's prophecy, she must rely on Seren and ancient magic if death and disaster are not to shatter her life once more.

Qwill's Thoughts

The Silver Witch by Paula Brackston is without doubt my favorite of her novels. The novel moves back and forth from the present day of Tilda's point of view to that of Seren in the early 900s. The juxtaposition of Tilda's and Seren's lives works beautifully allowing the reader to get to know both women as more and more is slowly revealed about their connection.

Tilda is a fascinating person. She's grieving the loss of her husband and trying to move on with her life as best she can. She has moved to the cottage, Ty Gwyn, above Llangors Lake in Wales close to the Brecon Beacons. This was the cottage she was supposed to share with her husband. Strange things begin to happen to and around her and she wonders if her hold on reality is slipping.

Seren is equally riveting. Unlike Tilda she knows exactly who she is. She understands her powers and how to use them. She does not have an easy life in some ways but is extremely comfortable in her skin.

The people that Tilda in the here and now and that Seren in her age interact with are well crafted. You get a very strong sense of what life was like for Seren including what the area looked like and who the people were. Brackston even delves into the politics of the time. Events in Seren's life will have an impact on the future; Tilda's future. In the present Tilda is learning to live and love again. It is not easy. She's different is several ways. She has to face many fears and dig deep to survive what is happening. Of all of Brackston's characters Tilda will be the one that stays with me. She is a brave woman coping with life, love and the supernatural with new found determination and strength. Brackston does an extraordinary job bringing Tilda and Seren to life.

The novel is infused with history of the Celts in the Llangors Lake area. I actually looked up the Lake. It exists. Anchoring the story around the rich history of the area is wonderful. Brackston has done her homework and then some.

The Silver Witch is exciting, at times frightening, deeply engaging, and beautifully written. This is a book that I was sad to see end.

An excerpt

The Giveaway

What:  One entrant will win a copy of The Silver Witch by Paula Brackston from the publisher. US/CANADA ONLY

How:  Log into and follow the directions in the Rafflecopter below, which includes the following question:

Who is your favorite main character from Paula Brackston's 'Witch' novels?:

Bess Hawksmith from The Witch's Daughter;

Morgana from The Winter Witch;


Lady Lilith Montgomery from The Midnight Witch.

Who and When:  The contest is open to all humans on the planet earth with a US or Canadian mailing address. Contest ends at 11:59 PM US Eastern Time on April 26, 2015. Void where prohibited by law. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 years old or older to enter.

*Giveaway rules and duration are subject to change without any notice.*

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Morgana is my favorite character. Thanks for this great feature and wonderful giveaway. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

  2. I am a book behind, so will go with Bess for now. Thanks!

  3. I don't have a favorite. I haven't yet read any of the Paula Brackston's novels.

  4. I just flipped a "coin" and picked Bess Hawksmith from The Witch's Daughter; :) Thanks for s haring!

  5. My favorite character was Lady Lilith Montgomery from The Midnight Witch. She was so brave in her role as Head Witch, and she took so many risks in balancing that role with her desire to be with the man she loved.

  6. I haven't read any of them! This book sounds great though. I love the mix of the time periods.