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Lies: Ann Putnam Jr.'s Recounting of the Salem Witch Trials

3.95  ·  Rating details ·  39 ratings  ·  24 reviews
Kindle Edition, 73 pages
Published March 10th 2014 by Oliver Dahl
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Meg - A Bookish Affair
"Lies" is a historical fiction account of Ann Putnam Jr., who was one of the infamous witnesses during the Salem Witch Trials. She accused countless numbers of her neighbors of being witches and got them punished and even killed. This is a short book but it packs a punch. Geared for young adult readers, this book is a great fictional introduction to a fascinating historical event.

The story is told from the perspective of Ann, which I absolutely loved. The book makes the supposition that Ann real
Kristen Cansler
Mar 13, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: blog-review, r2r
Lies chronicles the story of Ann, a teenager who lives through the Salem Witch Trials first hand. Based on historical facts, the story follows the beginnings of the trial as Ann makes a grave mistake that will alter her life forever. Whenever she begins to spin a web of lies, she realizes too late that she's the one caught in the web.

Okay. First things first. Oliver Dahl, the author of Lies and two other books, is sixteen. Wow. Whenever I first received Lies, I fully expected to be going easy on
Ben Langdon
May 26, 2014 rated it really liked it
This is a very nice and quick read. Dahl's writing is fluent and moves along at a solid pace. The story covers the Salem Witch Trials from the perspective of one of the young accusers, and his protagonist Ann Putnam jr. is an interesting creation. She is innocent and very shy in the beginning, but through a very believable, yet damaging, relationship with her father Ann becomes one of the worst accusers in Salem.

Dahl admits he used history as a launching pad and this story is for entertainment r
Jul 18, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sara Stephenson
Oct 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing
My Family History in Print

My great grandmother’s maiden name was Putnam. This story is about my 9th great grandfather, my great uncle and cousin (Ann). This book was fascinating and eye opening to say the least. I recently did my ancestry through and found generations that lived in Salem. More research led me to this book and to a museum dedicated to my family and their part they played in this tragic story. It is a great read and has a good balance of facts to fiction to keep anyon
Mar 13, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: owned-ebooks
In Dahl’s latest novella, he explores a retelling of the Salem Witch Trials from the point of view of one of the afflicted. When Ann Putnam’s friends become bewitched shortly after having their fortunes told, Ann finds that there must be something she, a 12 year old, can do to help rid her town of witches and save her friends. She goes undercover, trying to find out whom in the town is and is not a witch. However, she finds that others have further motives in this town, beyond saving the girls f ...more
Mar 21, 2014 rated it really liked it
At just over 70 pages, this novella was a quick read and gave an interesting twist to the story behind the Salem Witch Trials.

While it starts with the cast of characters that we all know - Abigail, Elizabeth, Ann and Tituba, Oliver portrays the origins behind some of Ann's accusations in a new light. While I think most people believe that these girls were all pretending for fun and attention that got out of hand, reading Lies gave me another perspective to think about - how it might not have bee
Mar 13, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: book-club
This is a fun, easy, and quick read that takes a unique perspective on the Salem Witch trials. The narrator of the novel is a 12 year old girl and Oliver Dahl does an amazing job of writing in such a way that I easily felt like I was in the head of twelve year old Ann Putnam Jr. Dahl adds fictitious details to historical events to create a plausible explanation for why Ann could have acted the way she did. I found this book both fun and educational and I look forward to reading more books by thi ...more
Jodi Woody
Mar 14, 2014 rated it really liked it
I was given a copy of “Lies” by the author, Oliver Dahl, in exchange for an honest review. I thoroughly enjoyed the book. I have always been interested in the Salem witch trials, a part of history that has never been able to explain exactly what happened. “Lies” plays out from both sides of the fence, those who were truly “afflicted” and those who were “faking.” Usually the story of Salem chooses a side. I liked the fact that Mr. Dahl chose to include both sides. The writing style is good. The s ...more
Mar 13, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Oliver Dahl’s retelling of the Salem Witch Trials holds a “magic” of its own. Told from the point of view of twelve-year-old Ann Putnam, LIES cast a spell, riveting my curiosity and causing me to reevaluate how I perceive certain events from history.
“What if Ann Putnam was lying?”
“What if the other girls are lying?”
“What if those accused aren’t really witches?”
“What if Ann’s father was only using her for political gain?”
Oliver does a magnificent job, making you ask your own “what if” questions t
Holly Michelle
Mar 13, 2014 rated it really liked it
In this Novella written by Oliver Dahl we learn the stories from the Salem Witch Trials told from the POV of 12 year old Ann Putnam.
Oliver Dahl did a great job with the emotions in this book. It drew me in the more I read. The plot had a smooth flow to it and kept me reading. The entire journey was amazingly wrote by a 16 year old.
Maria Denney
Jan 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
The author states in the Author's Note that this book is not factual, but it is very good regardless. This is the (fictional) story of Ann Putnam Jr. and how she came to be one of the accusers in the Salem Witch Trials. How she fought a battle within herself of good and evil with evil, and evil being the winner. ...more
Chrissy Busick
Such a sad unfolding of events

Intrest in the Salem witch trials influenced me to read this book. I found myself somewhat sympathizing with Ann. She originally made her choice in hopes of helping her friends. The abuse she ended up suffering at the hands of her own father was so upsetting.
Jun 17, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: first-reads
I received a copy of "Lies" from the author in exchange for a review.
This is the first book (as far as I can remember) that I've read that takes place during the Salem witch trials, and it is most definitely the first book I've encountered that handles the subject from a strictly non-paranormal perspective.
It follows Ann, a young girl who pretends to be tormented by witches in order to, hopefully, save her friends and her town.
It's a short book, more of a novella or short story, but it's definit
Will Van Stone Jr
Mar 22, 2014 rated it really liked it
An interesting telling of the witch hysteria in Salem

"Lies" is an interesting and well written tale told from the perspective of Ann Putnam, one of the girls who threw Salem into one of its darkest periods. From the first page, you're drawn into her small, religion-centered world where only the most devout is expected of a person. But it's what boils underneath that really intrigues. There are secrets and lies beyond the games played by Abigail and the other girls; some people use it as an oppor
Sep 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I have been fascinated by the Salem Witch Trials since I first learned of them as a child. I found it horrifying that children were so afflicted. Then as I got older and read more on it, I was horrified that young girls were believed so readily. So many were tortured and died in the name of religion.
This story takes the point of view of Ann Putnam Jr., who was one of the afflicted girls. She later took back her accusations. Unfortunately it was too late to save anyone. I found this story to be
Heather Manning
Mar 17, 2014 rated it really liked it
The Idea:
I loved the idea. I have always been fascinated by the Salem Witch Trials, so I was very eager to get my hands on this book. It did not disappoint in providing historical details that I appreciated. I recently saw both the plays "The Crucible" and "Afflicted: Daughters of Salem" so I was in the right mood to read this.
The Characters:
I would have liked to see a little more of the cast of characters, but I did feel that I knew the ones that were fleshed out. I understood Ann's actions, bu
C.E. Thornton
Jul 19, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Lies tells the story of the Salem Witch Trials from the perspective of Ann Putnam, Jr., the only witness of the trials to ever apologize for her role in the deaths of so many people. Dahl succeeds in both capturing and killing Putnam’s innocence as her role in the trials and mass hysteria grows.

Dahl’s passion and his research both paid off: in only 112 pages he’s spun a strong story out of the mystery that still surrounds one of the darkest events in American history. It’s a quick read (I read m
Double Decker Books
Aug 11, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Oliver has written a story here that is worth reading over again.

I truly enjoyed this book as a gift from Oliver. One I love History. Two, nothing interests me more is when an author can write a good tale about the Salem Witchcrafts and Trials.

Ann was a great character who made this story come alive. Ann being the level headed one and smart one dives in to same her friends and reveal the last remaining witch. Does she?
Apr 09, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Wonderful!! See my full review here: http://readingisawayoflife.blogspot.c... ~Happy Reading :) ...more
Feb 12, 2015 rated it really liked it
A quick easy read - couldn't put it down. Compelling story and creepy account of the Salem witch trials. The end fell a little flat for me but the beginning was intense. ...more
Hayley Bahnemann
Mar 27, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2014-books
I have always found the Salem Witch trials to be fascinating, but also really frustrating and I think this book does a good job of portraying both aspects of that.
Phoebe Marvelcomics
Oct 06, 2014 rated it really liked it
A really interesting short story from a young writer about the Salem With Trials. Definitely worth reading if you've got an hour or two to spare on a rainy day! ...more
Al Dheeb
May 09, 2015 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
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Born at a young age in 1998, Oliver Dahl is the oldest of five children and lives in Idaho. Previous to finishing middle school, The Dreamers had earned him the a spot as one of Idaho's Top 50 Idaho authors (2011). The title of Idaho's Student of the Year (2012) preceded both the publication of Dahl's second novel, The Nightmarers, and the completion of his freshman year of high school. The Nightm ...more

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