Anna's Reviews > The Witches' Hammer

The Witches' Hammer by Jane Stanton Hitchcock
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's review
Apr 22, 2009

it was ok
bookshelves: fiction, library-book, read-in-2009
Read in April, 2009

** spoiler alert ** Periodically, I'll read books solely because the title grabs me. Case in point: "The Witches' Hammer". As it turns out, the book is a mystery in the Knights Templar/church mythology genre, which was a pleasant surprise.

I wish I could say the same after having read the book.

The premise of the book - 35 year old divorcee discovers her father's murder is tied to a grimoire that he recently acquired, and goes on a quest to avenge his death, discovering church intrigue and pagan knowledge along the way.

While the historical mystery sections flowed smoothly, and Hitchcock obviously did an immense amount of research on the subject (on a complete side note: "Malleus Maleficarum", or "The Witches' Hammer was the title of a Season 3 "Supernatural" episode) - it als, there's a subplot regarding the protagonist, Beatrice O'Connell, and her sexual awakening that's just...bad.

Every time I read a sex scene, I mentally detached from the book, scratching my head at the appalling metaphors.
Embarrassed by the memory of her own passion, Beatrice started to put on her sweater. Diaz tried to help her, but she pulled away....
"Are you okay?" he said.
"I don't know," she answered in a barely audible voice.
"You haven't done anything wrong."
She looked up at him with tears in her eyes. "Why do I feel as if I have?"
"Because you've just met your wolf," Diaz said, putting his arms around her. "And you don't know her well yet. She frightens you."
"That wasn't me."
"It's part of you."
Beatrice's mouth was quivering. She didn't want him to see her cry. "Can I blame my wolf?" she asked.
"If you like. But she's nothing to be ashamed of."
"I am ashamed." She started to weep. "I'm so ashamed."
"Don't be," Diaz said, kissing her tears away.
"You don't understand. It's not just about me."
"Who is it about?"
"My father. I've been a fool, Luis - such a fool."
"No. You've only been asleep. And now Sleeping Beauty has awakened. And she's a wolf. There's no going back."

Yeah, even after typing it out, it still sounds clunky, which is a shame, considering the premise of the book is pretty cool.
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