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The Patriot Witch (Traitor to the Crown #1)

3.3 of 5 stars 3.30  ·  rating details  ·  351 ratings  ·  69 reviews
The year is 1775. On the surface, Proctor Brown appears to be an ordinary young man working the family farm in New England. He is a minuteman, a member of the local militia, determined to defend the rights of the colonies. Yet Proctor is so much more. Magic is in his blood, a dark secret passed down from generation to generation. But Proctor’s mother has taught him to hide ...more
ebook, 352 pages
Published April 28th 2009 by Random House Publishing Group (first published 2009)
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(showing 1-30 of 916)
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Sherwood Smith
Though I got thrown off track during the opening because Finlay had an unmarried girl entering a coffee house, and in the company of her father (which at least in England was just about always a pimp bringing in a "coffee girl" for a customer), and this girl was wearing a cap (which no eighteen year old girl would be caught dead in unless she were already married) outside (no bonnet?)--making me think that he had created an alternate world, the way Madeleine Robins did with her Sarah Tolerance b ...more
Jacob Proffitt
The more I hear about Proctor's infatuation with Emily, the less I can take the stupid piling up in this book. It'd be one thing if I didn't suspect that he's going to spend the remainder of this book fixated on her. It's just so clumsy, really. I mean, when a girl repudiates both what you are (a witch) and what you do (fighting for the minutemen) and is horrified by both, that relationship is completely over unless you plan on repudiating them (and probably not even then). She isn't going to be ...more
Review Patriot Witch

On the brinks of Revolution, American militia men—troupes of armed farmers and other non-military men—stand to guard the “Patriot Cause” against the British redcoats. Unknown to the vast majority of fighting men on both sides is the presence of magical intervention—or that those among them are charmed or gifted with supernatural abilities.

Twenty-year old Proctor Brown, a farmer and militiaman, spots a charm worn by Major Pitcairn, a British “lobster”. Though Proctor is suppo
Tamora Pierce
Proctor Brown is a Minuteman, summoned to battle in Lexington. He's been courting the beautiful daughter of a Tory neighbor who is not happy that he's thrown his lot in with the rebel cause. And he has magic, as the son of a line of witches that goes back to the infamous Salem trials. It's his magic that makes him realize Major Pitcairn, in command of the British regulars, has a charm that makes him invulnerable to injury. His interference in trying to take Pitcairn's charm makes a British witch ...more
Jim Gera
Surprisingly Spectacular

After reading the synopsis on the back cover I was expecting the Patriot Witch to be a cheesy and laborious read. To my delight it was the complete opposite. I was instantly drawn into Proctor Brown’s character and the imagery created by Finlay’s writing. Finlay has done a fantastic job of combining the history of the American Revolution, the lore or Salem Witchcraft and the Puritan society into a fast moving, well development and twisting thriller.

Proctor Brown is a hi
Having heard nothing about this book, I picked it up on a whim when searching for light reading for a recent vacation. I had just spent a year in another teacher's American History class, helping my ESL students, and I was curious how Finlay would portray the American Revolution with magic.

I was pleasantly surprised. Reminiscent of Naomi Novik's novels, the reader follows the main character Proctor Brown through some famous moments in history. The magic system created by Finlay is nicely done, f
It's April, 1775, the time of year when a young man's mind turns to romance, cattle, and his poor fashion options. Young Proctor Brown has many things on his mind, not the least of which is his attempted courtship of loyalist Emily Rucke. Her father is none too pleased by the pairing and Proctor means to change his mind. Matters are complicated by the fact that Proctor is a farmer, a militiaman, and a witch.

It's no easy thing being a witch in 1775 New England. It's a thing Proctor's mother has t
The Patriot Witch, first installment of C.C. Finlay's Traitor to the Crown series, sets up the story of young Proctor Brown, who's inherited the ability to scry from his mother. His only wish is to marry his sweetheart and prove himself to her father by making a fortune on his farm... except that the stirrings of rebellion are beginning in the countryside, and Proctor's sympathies are with the local militia with whom he's enlisted. When he encounters a British officer carrying a powerful protect ...more
Nicholas Whyte
"[return][return]This is hot off the presses, having been published only last week. Our hero, Proctor Ward, is a young Bostonian caught up in the start of the War of Independence. He discovers that he has magical powers, inherited from his Salem ancestors, and gets mixed up in faction and counterfaction of the secret network of witches, supported by Quakers and other free thinkers. (The British have magic too, led by the historical John Pitcairn, whose s ...more
Shaunesay Eslanai
Quick review for RWB Read-a-thon, more to come.

Witchcraft underlies events that begin the Revolutionary War. A young militiaman seeks to learn more about his own powers and becomes enmeshed in magic much larger than he ever realized existed.

I have mixed feelings on this one. I love the idea of magic being involved in the time period, when witchcraft was viewed with grave fear, but just didn't bond too well with the characters.
Preston Dubose
I got this book several months ago as a publisher promotional e-book. It didn't grab me in the first two pages, so I set it aside and focused on other things. Finally, I gave it another try and was pleasantly surprised. Within a few pages of where I'd left off, the plot picked up and the book kept me turning (virtual) pages right up to the end. Was it predictable? In a lot of ways, yes. More than once I read a passage and thought to myself, "This is clearly foreshadowing," but it was fun enough ...more
Historical Urban Fantasy (A Review of the whole Trilogy)

I am normally not one to read urban fantasy. It typically has way too many dry and overused ideas. The authors of the genre tend to be unimaginative as well as untalented or perhaps lazy. For example? Sparkling vampires, need I say more? While I am a fan of alternative history, I am a harsh judge. So, if I encountered the complete Traitor to the Crown Trilogy by C.C. Finlay in a library book sale I most likely would never buy it. On the d
I couldn't get into this series. It was well written but I just couldn't make myself care about the characters.
7/5/12 ** I thoroughly enjoyed this - a nice blend of historical fiction set in the opening months of the American Revolution and supernatural elements. Did you know that we had witches on both sides fighting a shadow war?

Have I mentioned lately that I LOVE the internet? While reading THE PATRIOT WITCH, I wanted to see a 1775-era map of Boston, Lexington & Concord. So when Proctor fought in the Lexington battle and the Concord battle on the same day, how far did he really run down roads and
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
We readers all have peculiar tastes.

One of the peculiarities of my taste is that I tend to dislike "alternate histories." Having to imagine that the Sourth won the Civil War and then Hitler migrated there in 1918 so the Germans were really the good guys in WWII...just seems too high a toll to pay before I even get in to the story.

And I have an equal prejudice against "epic historical fantasies" (of the type typified by Guy Gavriel Kay) where the setting is really (pick one) Renaissance Italy /
Jesse Whitehead
Proctor Brown is getting married to a young Boston socialite and about to inherit his father’s large and prosperous farm. Then the Revolutionary War breaks out and Proctor, one of the minutemen, gets tossed into the middle of it. Things couldn’t be worse until he discovers that he is a witch when he encounters a British soldier wearing a charm to keep him safe.

Proctor has to learn to control his magic in the midst of war and treachery and betrayal while trying to understand which side he’s on.

This book is definitely well written but unfortunately I had trouble forming a bond with the main character. I prefer my heroes a little bit more decisive. Through most of the book Proctor's magic is rather ineffectual. He seems slow to learn, is not really inclined to experiment and there is a complete scarcity of anyone to teach him (although he is surrounded by other witches for most of the book). I read a sample of the second book in the series. It starts off a year after the events in the f ...more
William Tooker
C.C. Finlay is a historical researcher IMHO that is second to none. His academic background lends itself well to the crafting of this project and these characters.

Proctor Brown is a grounded flawed character even for a Witch. He follows him impulse when his gift of prophecy has warned him just as his witchy mother had warned him. He discovers early on that discretion and control can fail even when fueled by the best intentions.

In one of the most dangerous periods in American history he stumble
This is an unusual book about witches, in that the main character is a male witch - something you don't usually see in "paranormal" books. And when there is a male witch character he's often cast as a bad guy.

In this case the protagonist, Proctor Brown is a decidely GOOD witch, although he doesn't really know much about his talents, or how to use them, because his Mother, from whom his talents come doesn't want him to use them so won't teach him anything.

To complicate matters further, Proctor is
James Snyder
I love books that take place during the Revolutionary War, and that's what I was looking for when I found this one. I actually noticed the sequel A Spell For The Revolution first but realizing it was a series I bought this one. By the end of the first chapter I could barely put it down.
The pace is nice and quick in the beginning but slows down just a little in the middle, but by that time I was already hooked. Thoug h some of the dialogue wasn't precisely period, it is not distracting, and it
Eric Juneau
Tedious. Imagine if the there were witches in the Revolutionary War, and those witches were on both sides, controlling things through subtle magic - debilitating spells, artifacts of protection, and conspiracies with leaders. This book has three parts - the Shot Heard Round the World, exile at a farm full of witches, and the Battle of Bunker Hill.

The problem is that it's filled with descriptions of the battle, through the eyes of the main character. You can tell the author is a historian with a
Maria Guglielmo
The Patriot Witch is a historical fantasy where a young minuteman learns about his magical powers. The idea is intriguing, and I think it would especially appeal to Revolutionary War history buffs. The book is solidly written, but I found that the middle dragged on. I also never felt a great connection with the protagonist and his love interest and fellow witch Deborah. The final battle scenes picked up the pace, and provided some good tension.
Lynn Calvin
Aug 08, 2010 Lynn Calvin rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Lynn by: can't remember, but someone did.
Finally got around to reading this- bought it quite a while ago on someone's recommendation. It sounded interesting and it sort of was, but somehow it didn't engage me. I had no strong sense of the characters and they seemed to be walking through their plot and their lines. For me, the main character's relationship with his mother was erratic and unclear.

The setting was interesting - the revolutionary war, but I was also somewhat thrown by the author's failure to correctly render Quaker "plain s
This book is very well done, and I enjoyed following Proctor's story as it dipped in and out of well-known US history. Sadly, US history is generally Not My Thing, so for me personally, it wasn't as addicting as, say, the Temeraire series. However, if you're looking for a well-crafted extension of the fantastic into the Revolutionary War, check this out--it feels very much of the time and mindset of 1770s America.
I have mixed feelings about this book. I like the idea behind the book: combining witchcraft with historical events, in this case, the American Revolution. I really like the author's solid grounding in history that doesn't overpower the story. I understand that the world has to be built and the characters introduced (I understand this is the start of a series) and he did a pretty good job with that although the story was a little draggy in the beginning third to half & I wasn't too sure I li ...more
While I love any book that deals with the American Revolution, I am not the biggest paranormal fan. THE PATRIOT WITCH however is a historical novel with a twist........witchcraft. The hero is young Proctor Brown and his role in 1776 is that of most young men that consider themselves to be a member of the Sons of Liberty. He also has a sweetheart named Emily but that romance is up in the air because her father is loyal to the king and is not happy that Emily is involved with a Patriot. Emily in f ...more
A very readable book, and provides some nice insight into what it might have been like to live in the time of the American Revolution. However, the writing is a little clunky and the protagonist spends too much of his time being clueless to make this book enjoyable. The author seems not to be able to decide whether he's supposed to play the role of the observer or the hero, so he switches off at inopportune moments.

I am sure this book would be more fun if I were intimately familiar with the hist
Suitable for reading in a household where the TV is going all-day and all-night, like where I was last week. I checked it out especially for traveling, and it was the right pick.

If it hadn't been competing with audio distractions (you can not look, but you can't not listen) I think I would have been disappointed at the not-exactly-zippy pace, and lack of surprise in plot and/or description of magic.

Revolutionary America isn't an era that really grips me (should I blame Johnny Tremain? Too many 5
This book was really good a lot better then I expected. It was a fast paced, fun quick read that wasn't complicated at all.

A lot of historical fic can be flat or really cheesy and this was really believeable. I liked that I could actually imagine the characters in real life Revolutionary War period.

The magic that the people had fit, and it didn't seem out of place. The characters are a little flat except for the main character, readers really get to know the main character.

The only thing I'd
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Note: First novel and short story collection were published as "Charles Coleman Finlay."
More about C.C. Finlay...

Other Books in the Series

Traitor to the Crown (3 books)
  • A Spell for the Revolution (Traitor to the Crown, #2)
  • The Demon Redcoat (Traitor to the Crown, #3)
A Spell for the Revolution (Traitor to the Crown, #2) The Demon Redcoat (Traitor to the Crown, #3) The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, July/August 2014 The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, May/June 2015 The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, July/August, 2015

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