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How to Hang a Witch

(How to Hang a Witch #1)

4.06  ·  Rating details ·  15,345 ratings  ·  2,698 reviews
It's the Salem Witch Trials meets Mean Girls in a debut novel from one of the descendants of Cotton Mather, where the trials of high school start to feel like a modern day witch hunt for a teen with all the wrong connections to Salem’s past.

Salem, Massachusetts is the site of the infamous witch trials and the new home of Samantha Mather. Recently transplanted from New York
Library Binding, 358 pages
Published July 26th 2016 by Knopf Books for Young Readers
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Kayla The second book is about the Titanic. I'm unsure how they are going to relate, but I can't wait to see!! This book is amazing--I finished it in two da…moreThe second book is about the Titanic. I'm unsure how they are going to relate, but I can't wait to see!! This book is amazing--I finished it in two days AND I'm a slow reader! Highly recommend.(less)
Amy i would hope so! have you seen the book trailer?
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 ·  15,345 ratings  ·  2,698 reviews

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Start your review of How to Hang a Witch (How to Hang a Witch, #1)
Khanh, first of her name, mother of bunnies
He opens the basket and pulls out delicious-looking foods.

“Where’d you get all this?” I ask, still flustered.

“The tea and scones are from London. The finger sandwiches and pastries are from Paris. And the Devonshire cream is from Devonshire.”

He went all over Europe picking out food for me? How’s this happening right now?
This book is about witchcraft, and it is the silliest book I've ever read about the subject. I've read plenty of books with very young MCs (the one in this book is 15) that a
Jeff Zentner
Jan 15, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I loved every minute of this twisty-turny book.

I wonder what Cotton Mather would think if he found out that his great great great great great (you get the picture) granddaughter wrote one of the best YA books I've ever read...and it happened to be about the Salem Witch Trials.

This book is absolute thrilling, spooky fun. It's not a short book, but it feels like it, such is the tightness and pace of the plotting. There's nary a wasted word. You'll find yourself, as I did, unable to put it down, p
Wendy Darling
This review is a magnet for trolls for some reason, which I find extremely interesting, especially since it was quietly shelved a long time ago. Love the book? Write your own fucking review and stay the hell off mine. You think you're actually helping a book you like by attacking people who didn't enjoy it? Think again. You're turning my disinterest for this book into despising it, and the next step is going to be my rating it one star whereas it's been left unrated until now.

I'm at the point w
Kelly (and the Book Boar)
Find all of my reviews at:

A REVIEW VIA GIFFERY (even more so than usual):

As soon as I saw “It's the Salem Witch Trials meets Mean Girls” I was sold. I was also 100% positive I would love this. Not to brag or anything, but . . . .

With descendants of the original Salem witches as the girls who rule the school I immediately pictured . . . .

And was so excited I almost peed my pants . . . .

Bonus was the bitch squad were all super fab and also inc
Sarah (thegirltheycalljones)
While I do deeply respect the research and the personal link the author has with this particular bit of history (being related to the Mather family), I didn't enjoy this book.
The idea was cool, as it always is when it's about the famous Witch Hunt of the sixteen hundreds, and paralleling the events now and then could have been an exciting adventure was not.
This tale is basic YA, meaning you get everything you're used to read about in the post-Twilight tsunami : an irritating and self-ce
Imogene Dacanay
Jun 24, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: books-reviewed
FUN FACT: The author of this book is actually a descendant of Cotton Mather. COOL RIGHT!

This book isn't one that I could say "the best", I can't say that right from the very first start it will capture you. To be honest, I've managed to read almost 30 pages before deciding that this book is good.

Adriana brings us to the present-day Salem. Samantha Mather, together with her stepmother moved to Salem, specifically to her grandmother's house. Being a descendant of the man who's mention to be a gre
Whispering Stories
Book Review by Stacey on

Teenager Samantha (Sam) Mather’s father is in a coma, her Step Mum Vivian has had to sell their apartment in New York to pay for his medical bills and move them to the house that her Grandmother owned before she died, located in Salem.

Being a Mather in Salem isn’t easy though, as one of her relations, Cotton Mather, was one of the people behind the famous witch hanging in 1692.

Also living in Salem, and attending the local high school, are the des
Jamie-leigh Haughn
Sep 21, 2016 rated it did not like it
Reading this book was like eating plain low fat oatmeal... blah. The characters had no personality, the story was rushed and predictable, I enjoyed the beginning but found myself annoyed by the end. I do feel that this would make a good made for TV Disney channel Halloween movie, but as a book I just wasn't a fan. Whomp whomp. ...more
Apr 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
Samantha Mather lived in New York with her dad and step-mother Vivian until her father suddenly fell into a coma. With medical bills mounting, Vivian sells their NYC apartment and moves them to Salem, Massachusetts. Samantha's grandmother owned a house there before she died, and they can live there while Samantha's father is hospitalized. Immediately, things do not go as planned. As a relative of Cotton Mather, a proponent of the Salem witch trials, local descendants of those killed in the trial ...more
Mlpmom (Book Reviewer)
Feb 05, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: kindle-books
Is there a book about witches I ever resist? Not usually. And while some let me down in one way or another, I am happy to report that I really enjoyed this, so much so that I already have book two ready and downloaded for the next moment I have to read something from my TBR pile. Definitely fun and mysterious and full of all the good witchy stuff I love and crave.
Nov 20, 2015 rated it it was ok
Have you ever read a really highly rated book and just know you're going to be in the minority? Because I do, and it's this one. It pained me to read this book, like I was literally regretting sitting down and reading up. But, there was no way I couldn't finish it, because I needed to know exactly what made this such a painful experience. And, honestly, I'm still having a hard time with that question. there are so many elements in How to Hang a Witch that just didn't work. Maybe it's me, but thi ...more
3.5/5 stars

Video Review:

This was one of the books I picked up during my BEA/Bookcon trip. I was looking forward to this book ever since I read the synopsis earlier this year and have to say I really enjoyed what I read. It flew by for me since I finished it in a matter of two days even though I am crazy busy.

I loved how the author took her family history and twisted it into this YA book. Now, I didn't exactly feel too connected with the characters (y'all
Brittany S.
Initial Impressions 8/2/16: This book was totally Hocus Pocus meets The Craft (with some actual history in there too)! I got vibes at the beginning and it maintained that vibe throughout. Now someone get Fall here NOW so I can splash in leaves and put up Halloween decorations and drink PSLs watch the best seasonal movies.

HOW TO HANG A WITCH was a lot of fun! So many witchy books are quite fantastical (a full fantasy world with school and society like Harry Potter) or historical fiction or full
Korrina  (OwlCrate)
Oct 22, 2016 rated it liked it
This book was fun, but also kind of silly. If you're looking for a book to read around Halloween it's perfect though! I enjoyed it quite a bit. ...more
Nov 24, 2017 rated it really liked it
I love books of any kind on the Salem Witch trials so I ate this one right up! It was interesting and fast paced with characters that you could love and some you could love to hate! Got dinner plans so can't wait too long of a review but loved this one for sure!

Overall, a fun quick read!

Well, that was downright too predictable, which is a shame, because it started off strong(ish) - only for the story to dull and come to a complete stop. Honestly, after 3/4 of the book I just wanted to finish it and put it away.

Part of me wants to say that this was unique, because I have never read a YA book about the Salem Witch Trials (at least not like this one); however, aside from the idea, the rest of the story was completely unoriginal. I felt like the characters were borrowed from o
Brittany (Brittany's Book Rambles)
4.5/5 Stars

For ages, I have been looking for that perfect Halloweeny read, and I've finally found it! It's witchy without being too creepy, and being the big scaredy-cat that I am, the latter is extremely important. I'm fascinated and horrified by the history of the Salem witch trials, and How to Hang a Witch uses that history and turns it into a spooky and romantic story. I really identified with the main character's voice, and I now have a new book boyfriend in Elijah—a swoony ghost with a sad
Jun 19, 2016 rated it really liked it
[3.75 Stars] This isn't the best thing I've ever read, and it does start off in a way that if I wasn't really wanting to review it, I might have put it down. It begins super tropey with a young self-proclaimed sarcastic teen moving to a new city where she meets two incredibly handsome boys and some mean girls. Chaos ensues. BUT it was actually so much fun once I got into the story. It's super plot-driven in my opinion so people should be aware of that. But the mystery and the magic were so cool ...more
Nov 23, 2016 rated it did not like it
Shelves: did-not-finish
I gave this book half a star and rounded it up to 1 star on Goodreads. I also did not finish this book and quit at the 50 percent mark.

The only cool thing about this book is that a descendant of the Mathers (see Salem Witch trials) wrote a book book Salem and what happens when a descendant of Cotton Mather moves to Salem. There appears to be a curse at work on Sam and the Descendants (the book titles them that way, not me) of the supposed witches that were hanged. Other than that, there is not r
Spooky. Paranormal. Angsty. I should have read this around Halloween but still read in 2 days (probably would have read in one if not Thanksgiving/family time). Samantha Mather moves to Salem from NYC due to her family's financial situation after her father goes into a mysterious coma. Weird, slightly sinister things seem to have been happening to people around Sam for as long as she remembers and just get worse in Salem. The mystery of the Mathers and the Descendants curse kept me turning the p ...more
I wasn't expecting to like this book, let alone it become one of my favorite books. This was definitely binge worthy and I recommend to anyone who wants to learn about the Salem Witch Trials all the while enjoying the action and love story that comes along with it. ...more
Kali Wallace
Jan 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I absolutely adore this book. I read it as a manuscript, and I read it as an ARC, and I am going to buy the finished version when it comes out, and I love it more every time. It's so charming and spooky and witchy and twist, and also it features my grumpy ghost boyfriend, who I shall not share with anybody else, even though I understand if everybody comes away from this wanting a ghost boyfriend of their very own. Go find your own. This one is mine.

But seriously, more to the point, what a fun ri
I really feel like this was more of a three star book in that I enjoyed it but wasn’t wowed by it, but I loved the author’s message, though presented in a cheesy manner, that kindness is one of the most important choices we can make. The book was predictable but still fun, and overall, the kindness message made me bump it up half a star and thus, 3.5 stars rounded up.
Jan 15, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I knew, going into this book, that I would probably like it. I've been forever fascinated by the Salem witch trials, and knowing the book was written by a descendant of Cotton Mather added an extra bit of depth and definitely peaked my curiosity.

But I more than liked it.

I LOVED this story.

It's smart and funny, sweet and sad, scary and tense. I kept turning the pages because I needed to know what was going to happen next.

Adriana Mather brings us to modern day Salem with Sam (never Samantha) a
Book Outlet
Apr 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book is getting shelved to a ton of places. It was an adventure from start to end and I could never figure out where it was going. I ship Elijah & Sam SO HARD, too! The worst part of this book for me was the fact that it had to end -- which the ending was fantastic, by the way!

Overall, I loved this book way, way more than I thought I would. Also, shout out to our IG because someone let me know there is a sequel and I DID NOT KNOW! Now I absolutely need it 👀

Highly recommend this book!
Colleen Houck
I loved this take on the Salem witch trials and comparing it with modern day bullying. Umm and can I say I have a major crush on Elijah? Hope to see him again in book two. Loved the setting and discovering the answers to all the secrets.
Sep 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I don't reread many books. For one, I don't really have the time. Two, if I really loved a book I'm afraid rereading it will make me not like it as much. I reread How to Hang a Witch because I wanted the characters and the world fresh in my mind as I went into the second installment. I think this is the first time I can honestly say that I enjoyed the book more the second time I read it.

Our main chatacter is Sam. She just moved to her parents home town, Salem, Mass., with her step-mother becaus
Laurie Flynn
Dec 02, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I was lucky enough to get a copy of this book at ALA Midwinter. I'd heard amazing things about it, and as a huge fan of all stories involving witches or witchcraft, it was definitely a debut that piqued my curiosity. Not only that, but Adriana Mather is a descendant of Cotton Mather of Salem witch trial infamy!

I was invested in Sam, the main character, from page one-- she's exactly my type of heroine. She's snarky and smart and guarded, and her emotions feel very realistic as she grapples with b
Kurt Dinan
Apr 14, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Mather’s debut novel is suspenseful, funny, intelligent, and informative. The fact that Mather is related to Cotton Mather, he of Salem Witch Trials fame, gives this novel real weight. I’ve read a lot of novels that will be out in 2015, and Mather’s is one of the best. She has an ear for dialogue, an ability to educate while being incredibly entertaining, and has written one hell of a supernatural thriller. I loved every minute of it.
Sarah Ahiers
Jan 20, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I read this book as part of an arc tour in return for a fair review.

This book. Man, this book took me be surprise in all the best ways!

Samantha Mather, descendent of the infamous Cotton Mather of the Salem witch trials, finds herself moving to Salem after her father has an accident and is in the hospital. She's never been good at making friends and she's even worse in a town that takes it's history so seriously. And of course, Sam isn't the only descendant of the witch trials. In fact, there's a
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Adriana Mather is the New York Times bestselling author of How to Hang a Witch, with family roots that go back to Sleepy Hollow, the Salem Witch Trials, and the Titanic. She's also an actor and producer best known for her role in the award-winning Honeyglue. She co-owns Zombot Pictures, a production company that makes feature films. Her first acting scene in a film ever was with Danny Glover, and ...more

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