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Mist Over Pendle
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Mist Over Pendle

3.97 of 5 stars 3.97  ·  rating details  ·  224 ratings  ·  38 reviews
Seventeenth century England is a place of superstition and fear.





Deep in the Forest of Pendle, people have been dying in mysterious circumstances. The locals whisper of witchcraft, but Squire Roger Nowell, in charge of investigating the deaths, dismisses the claims as ridiculous. Until a series of hideous desecrations forces Roger and his cousin Margery to look further into
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Paperback, 416 pages
Published March 31st 2011 by Arrow (first published 1951)
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Community Reviews

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Brenda  Britton
This is one of my favorite books of all time and I have read it many times. I was of course influenced to a certain extent because the story is set in Lancashire, England where I hail from. The story is based on true facts regarding witch trials in the 1600s in Lancashire and there are several books written about this subject. This book is esentially a historical fiction including original names of the witches and certain prominent names from that time. Another book called, "The Lancashire Witch ...more
Janice
Utter rubbish. I feel conned. Witchcraft? What witchcraft, it's all about sewing dresses and moaning. Bloody dreadful. And I've owned this book for thirty years, finally got to read it, I wish I'd burned it at the stake instead.
Jade aka MrsTosh
I absolutely LOVE this book!! Being raised in Lancaster the place where the Pendle witches stood trial it has always been a big part of the towns history and I have been brought up with the story. It has always fascinated me and even taken me on a Pendle Witches Tour from Lancaster Castle to Pendle Hill and the surrounding areas.

I found this book so powerful and moving that I saw myself walking down the country lane cursing the peddler! just imagining what the 12 accused must have gone through e
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Derek
It's always weird when you realize that what you read is not what you thought you read. I had no idea until today that this story had a historical basis: the Pendle witches of Lancashire.

Neill fleshed out the historical record by supposing motive and character and (I assume) adding the wholly fictional Margery Whittaker. Aside from Margery's involvement, he takes a very conservative approach: the witches are not recast sympathetically as humble practitioners of folk medicine, nor were they part
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Jules
Mist Over Pendle by Robert Neill
★★★★☆

The Lancashire Witch trials of 1612 were the basis for this story. We have a young puritan girl, Margery, sent to her cousin Roger Nowell because her family doesn’t know what to do with her (she is distinctly un-puritan) and nobody can provide her with a dowry to marry her off. Roger’s way of life is more to Margery’s taste and, freed of the restrictions her upbringing had imposed on her, we see her blossom into an intelligent young woman. She accompanies her
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Sally
I'm sad that this book wasn't as awesome as I was expecting/hoping it to be. I mean, it sounded like a good idea... and I generally love witch-trial type of books, and for the first say hundred pages I was really into it. But then it somehow changed. Or maybe it was just too long and the style that held me for 100 pages just couldn't hold me for 300 more. It was rather dry and stodgy, and there were just too many characters to keep track of. I liked Roger and Margery a lot, but then more people ...more
Jo at Jaffareadstoo
My Halloween reading 2012.

I first read this book when I was teenager at school - so that's long enough ago for me to have forgotten just how good this story is.

The story of the Pendle witches is particularly relevant in 2012 as it is the four hundredth anniversary of the Lancashire witches. This most famous of witch trials took place in the forest and hills of the North Lancashire moors, a place that was as cold, dark and inhospitable as the landscape.

When Margery Whittaker is sent to live with
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Jenny (Border Dweller)
An amazing re-reading experience after almost 20 years. This is a beautifully told tale of events leading up to the Pendle Witch Trials, firmly grounded in the beliefs, customs and everyday life of the 17th Century. The characters are well drawn and, though perhaps a little unsubtle for modern readers, this does not detract from the strong story-telling.
Sarah Davies
I loved this book, sadly I believe it might be out of print. My mother recommended it to me when I was about 16 and it is just lovely, I've read it and the read it many times I'm the years since. Some people may not appreciate the subtleties of the anxiety and superstitions of the Jacobean period surrounding the idea of witchcraft which this book presents because it is very subtle and usually suggested rather than explicit; to me this is what is so clever about this book it shows that the fear o ...more
Sparkles
One of my all-time favorite books from childhood. I often liked to read it around Halloween. A mystery set to the backdrop of the a real historical event of the Pendle witches. Love this book.

Note: alternate title is "Mist Over Pendle" which I believe, is the title released in the UK.
Brightfeather
I cant say that this is anything like i would have expected,
I enjoyed this book so much, fab writing style , wonderful characters , loved it.
Penny Little
An enjoyable story. I really liked the character of Margery. A taste of what Pendle was like in 1612.
Claire
I have reread this and although its a little dated it is a good read about the Pendle Witches.
Nicola Cornick
A splendid piece of historical fiction.
Ellie
Mist Over Pendle was nothing like I had imagined it to be, and was probably all the better for it.

The story is set in 1611-12, against a background of the events leading up to the famous Pendle Witch Trials; using what was known of the trials, from Thomas Potts' contemporary account in The Wonderfull Discoverie of Witches, and of social mores at the time, Robert Neill presents a fictional imagining of the events leading up to the final committal for trial. A book centring on witchcraft was, I as
...more
Lisa Lilly
Most of the time I read suspense, mysteries and horror, but my favorite book is Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen. The Elegant Witch, set in England in the early 1600s, has an engaging writing style and sense of irony that remind me of Austen, but a plot and mood more along the lines of suspense/mystery. Margery, the youngest sibling and misfit in her Puritan family, is sent to live with her kinsman Roger, who is also a Justice of the Peace in the small town of Pendle. Initially, Pendle seems l ...more
Catherine
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Madame Zak
I first read this in my early teens and was fascinated by it. I've re-read it multiple times and still love it for the sheer detail and vividness of the writing. How far it strays from the historical truth I'm not enough of a historian to know, though it's fairly likely that the Pendle witch trials were the same sort of misogynistic scapegoating as all the others were.
Still a lovely, enthralling, rather comforting read, particularly for chilly autumn evenings.
Wallum
Despite taking a stance I usually disagree with, that of witches being evil, this novel was an enjoyable read, mainly due to the wonderful wordcrafting. This beautifully written book transported me back to the 1600's where I cantered through verdant copses listening to the snow crunch under my horse's feet. This is a well written historical fiction.
Charlie Trafford
I love this book as I live in Lancashire and spend a large proportion of my life around this area, its been a part of my life since I was young, its a powerful and moving book, especially precious to me as its near my home, might not be that interesting if you are not familiar with the Lancashire Witch Trials.
Alastair Walker
Read Mist Over Pendle at school in the seventies and it remains one of the best dramatisations of English with hunting ever written. Very atmospheric, gripping and it conveys a wry understanding of human nature in its tragic inevitability.
Danielle
Based on the Pendle Witch trials, this book gives an exciting and rich account of some of the scandals and characters associated with the events that took place in Pendle during the 1600s. Using details of the events, Neill imagines the type of place Pendle could have been and the types of characters these 'witches' were. written in a way that makes witchcraft seem very possible, the book was both chilling and gripping. Through the eyes of a young woman visiting Pendle, I got a strong sense of v ...more
Kerry
what is not to love about this book?
its romantic, its mysterious its written in beautiful old English, I spent three wonderful days reading it.
Catherine
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Elizabeth Andrews
Really enjoyed this, wasn't as witchy as I expected but you get a real feel of the time and area through his writing.
Lee
This is a wonderfully old fashioned page turner. It has ooodles of atmosphere, a thrilling plot laced with plenty of horror and liberally sprinkled with romance and humour, lovable heroes and repellant villains.
I have read this book many times and there are scenes I look forward to all the way through. It's the perfect comfort book - read it- you won't be disappointed.

Julia
Such a let down. Was expecting great things. Half way through gave up, not something I do lightly.
April
I really enjoyed this book, written in the 1950's it doesn't have the obsession with sex we seem to have these days but is not overly girly either even though the main protagonists are women.
Julia
It took a while for me to get into this novel and the style of writing, but I really enjoyed it eventually.
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I Read Therefore ...: Spooky October Read - Mist Over Pendle 25 12 Oct 28, 2013 01:36AM  
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  • The King's Daughter
  • The Lancashire Witches
  • My Enemy's Tears: The Witch of Northampton
  • Unnatural Murder: Poison in the Court of James I
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  • Sea Witch (Sea Witch Voyages, #1)
  • The Vizard Mask
  • The Vanishing Witch
  • The Flowering of the Rose (We Speak No Treason, #1)
  • Isabeau: A Novel of Queen Isabella and Sir Roger Mortimer (The Isabella Books, #1)
  • The Candle Man
  • The Tudor Bride (Catherine de Valois, #2)
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  • Burning Girls
  • Survivors
  • The Witch's Trinity
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