Friday, 23 April 2021

The Mercies by Kiran Millwood Hargrave

Hardcover, 352 pages


Published February 6th 2020 by Pan Macmillan


Historical fiction


Library




I need to try a quick review, but they are so hard. Weird that way.





I do not think I have read a book set in Norway during this time, not to mention the farthest north you can get. And I did not know about the devastating storm either, but then why would I.





The storm kills all the men, the women tries fishing to feed themselves. Good! No, not good, because men are stupid and will blame everyone, fishing is men's work! And omg you are so witches. And then this evil witch hunter shows up. Omg, nothing makes me angrier than zealous religious types. A woman wears pants, witch! The Saami are not "white", not Christian, Witch! 





I have heard that they used to try women by drowning them, but if you can swim? Witch, obvi. Arghhh. And the whole blaming, jealous and mass paranoia. Seeing witches everywhere. Humans are scum.





Noteworthy edit, I am actually related to an accused witch ;)  But it seems we were a tad bit nice and just fined and exiled her. So she moved 2 villages over. Story over





I enjoyed it, the pages flew by, it was an easy read






Finnmark, Norway, 1617. Twenty-year-old Maren Magnusdatter stands on the craggy coast, watching the sea break into a sudden and reckless storm. Forty fishermen, including her brother and father, are drowned and left broken on the rocks below. With the menfolk wiped out, the women of the tiny Arctic town of Vardø must fend for themselves.





Three years later, a sinister figure arrives. Absalom Cornet comes from Scotland, where he burned witches in the northern isles. He brings with him his young Norwegian wife, Ursa, who is both heady with her husband's authority and terrified by it. In Vardø, and in Maren, Ursa sees something she has never seen before: independent women. But Absalom sees only a place untouched by God, and flooded with a mighty evil.




As Maren and Ursa are drawn to one another in ways that surprise them both, the island begins to close in on them, with Absalom's iron rule threatening Vardø's very existence.





Inspired by the real events of the Vardø storm and the 1621 witch trials, The Mercies is a story of love, evil, and obsession, set at the edge of civilization.




27 comments:

  1. lol! Great review! I'll have to check this out, stupid men and all.

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  2. Don't know if this one's for me, but wow the cover is gorgeous.

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    Replies
    1. It is one for the historical fiction fans :)

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  3. Adding to my TBR list!!! I wanna read it!

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  4. oh these kind make me so mad too. World should have always been run by women, men suck!

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    Replies
    1. Ugh, so angry!!!! They even blamed unwed pregnant women on witchcraft, like wtf, I know this was the olden days, but come on

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  5. I hate how women were persecuted for being different, being accused of being a witch and possibly executed. Yeah, humans suck sometimes!

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    Replies
    1. And so much paranoia, and masshysteria, and just accusing so you would be be

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  6. I love your relation to the novel! Is this loosely based on a true story then?

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    Replies
    1. Yes, the storm was real, the witch trails were real. But some people and how it happened is all her imagination

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  7. YOU WITCH! I knew there was a reason I liked you! hehe.

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  8. This sounds interesting. I don't think I've read a book set on Norway.. Not surprised that my library doesn't have this...

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    Replies
    1. I have only read Viking time his fic set there

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  9. Funny how they always seem to fit the title of witch the way they want things to go. It's an easy way to dismiss women.

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    Replies
    1. So true, and so sad, and they still think that today

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  10. Norway! Plus fishing is man work :)

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  11. Always nice to have an easy read

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  12. "She moved 2 villages over." 😂 This is brilliant! Great review, by the way❤

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  13. Damned if you do (can swim), damned if you don't (can't) lol

    Karen @ For What It's Worth

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