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Sorceress Paperback – May 12, 2009


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Lexile Measure: 800L (What's this?)
  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Candlewick; Reprint edition (May 12, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0763642290
  • ISBN-13: 978-0763642297
  • Product Dimensions: 7.8 x 5 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #712,747 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

A Native American teen experiences a life-altering encounter after reading about Mary Newbury the 17th-century protagonist of Witch Child who may be connected with one of her own relatives, in Sorceress by Celia Rees. Ages 14-up.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From School Library Journal

Grade 7-10-This sequel to Rees's Witch Child (Candlewick, 2001) is a much more complex story, taking readers into a mystical plot that crosses time and place. Agnes, a Native American, is starting college in Boston. She reads part of a diary about 17th-century Mary Newbury and realizes that she has a connection with her from a story passed down in her family about a white woman who had settled with the Mohawks. Contacting the researcher who found Mary's diary leads to experiences that Agnes could not have imagined. While visiting the reservation, her aunt leads her into a vision quest where she "becomes" Mary. She sees a peaceful period, followed by years of death, forced migration, and constant conflict with settlers. Her final role as a respected healer is passed down through Agnes's ancestors, creating the link between the two women. The book ends with a series of historical notes written by Alison, the researcher. Rees manages to carry all of this off through her strong writing style and well-developed characters, using the artifacts that have been preserved in Agnes's family to add to the credibility of the story. The book not only gives readers a view of life 400 years ago and a look at one Native American culture, but also helps them understand what draws someone to historical research by showing that history is the story of people's lives and the events that shape them. While it can stand alone, the novel will be enjoyed more by those who have read Witch Child.
Jane G. Connor, South Carolina State Library, Columbia
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

More About the Author

Celia Rees was born in Solihull, West Midlands, UK. She studied History and Politics at Warwick University and then went on to teach English in city comprehensive schools for seventeen years. She now divides her time between writing, talking to readers in schools and libraries, and teaching creative writing.

She has written many books for older children and teenagers, and has become a leading writer for Young Adults with an international reputation. Her books have been translated into 28 languages and she has been short listed for the Guardian, Whitbread and W.H. Smith Children's Book Awards, as well as numerous regional awards in the UK and America. Witch Child won the prestigious Prix Sorcières in France in 2003, and the Di Cento Prize in Italy, 2001. Her latest book, The Fool's Girl, publishes in the U.S. in July, 2010

Celia lives in Leamington Spa, Warwickshire, with her husband, Terry. Her daughter, Catrin, now lives and works in London.

To learn more about Celia and her books, visit her website at: www.celiarees.com

Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

19 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Nancy E. on September 7, 2002
Format: Hardcover
Agnes, a Canadian Indian, is spending her time in college in Boston when she runs across a published diary of a girl that was an accused Salem witch. The Book is called Witch Child. Agnes can't get over the similarities from the book to one of her ancestors, a white woman that lived with the Indians. Combine that with the fact that she is beginning to have mysterious visions from the past, and Agnes realizes that something big is about to happen. She contacts the woman named Alison who is mentioned in the back of the book Witch child, a woman who is looking for information about Mary. Alison is eager to find info on Mary and will help Agnes in any way that she can. This sends Agnes away from school back home, where she is sent on a vision quest to find out what happened to Mary.
Although the books Witch Child, and Sorceress are fictional novels, Celia Rees makes you almost believe that every thing is real. It's thrilling to find out what happened to Mary for pretty much the rest of her life, and Agnes is a very strong and amiable character. Another great thing about this book is the appendixes in the back. It's filled with diary entries and letters written by the characters in Witch Child whom we don't unfortunately don't see anything of them in the book. Another thing that was great to see is the representations of Native Americans in not a negative light, but in a realistic one. If your a fan of great historical fiction, especially one that realistically shows Native Americans, I highly recommend this to you.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Jess on October 5, 2004
Format: Paperback
The end of "Witch Child" left me dying for more. I was too pleased to discover "Sorceress," though bewildered by the cover portait. It came to understand, as I read, that the portrait depicts a girl named Agnes, a Native American college student, who finishes reading "Witch Child" and has a vision, sent from, it seems, Mary herself.
After contacting Allison Ellman, the ambitious young woman who has taken it upon herself to discover Mary's history and that of those she tells of in her diary, Agnes sets off to the Mohawk Reservation, seeking her aunt, a medicine woman who she thinks will try to help her solve the mystery of these visions, and of Mary.
It is at this point in the novel, with her aunt at her side, and Allison fervently researching in Canada, that Agnes begins her spiritual journey to uncover Mary's future and her own past, linking Mary, the Pennacook, the Mowhawks and even the French Canadian as both Agnes and Mary's stories evolve simultaneously.

I thought this book was just as superb as the first. I was startled at first by the rapid change in the cast of characters--where did Agnes and Allison come from? I thought. However, when Agnes' visions begin, I understood, and settled in to enjoy the novel.
It definitely did not disappoint me. I was thrilled at the turns Mary's life took, and engrossed in all the details about Native Americans. One of the most fun parts of the book were the encounters with characters like Rebekah Rivers, who had been prominent in the first novel, and faded into Mary's past in the second.
Overall, "Sorceress" was written as beautifully as "Witch Child", and the story was as fascinating, if not more so, being that there were two stories unfolding at once.
Read more ›
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By hiphopgirl_1000 on December 10, 2002
Format: Hardcover
Agnes Herne is a Mohawk Indian living in Boston attending college when she begins to start getting visions from this girl named Mary. All she knows is that the visions are somehow connected to the girl she read about in the book "Witch Child"(Sorceress's prequel)named Mary Newbury. Agnes soon begin to suspect Mary is the woman in the legend of the white woman who joined the people and was a very skilled healer. Agnes decides to return to the Mohawk Indian reservation where she could get advice from her aunt, also a healer. Soon she goes on a powerful vision quest that will conclude Mary's story, the story of a girl who beat all odds and used her special powers to become a healer.
This was a fitting ending to Witch Child. Mary's ending wasn't exactly how I expected it to be but it was nice to find out about all the other people at Beluh and how the quilt where the original diary was found got to the museum. A definite must read for Witch Child fans!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Maria on January 11, 2004
Format: Paperback
I loved Soceress, it read so quick and easy. In Witch Child i found myself getting bored and waiting for something exciting to happen. In sorceress I was never bored and I couldn't wait to find out what would happen next. This sequel is a great way to finish Mary's story.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on December 14, 2006
Format: Paperback
Like the previous novel Witch Child, this book was definitely a page-turner as well. At the end of each page, I would get more and more interested in the way that the Natives Americans would communicate with the sprits. The Native Americans also had to prepare for their spiritual encounter with Mary. I personally love fiction novels. Just knowing that the story that you are reading is based on a true story amazes me. It is said to be read by 5th graders, but I think the 6th, 7th, 8th grade would be the right age group because of its mature vocabulary and content. I love Celia Rees' way of writing. It adds suspense to a good story, and excitement to a boring one. Let me tell you, that while reading this book my mind wandered quite a few times. I would sometimes think what it would be like to be that character for that moment. It's fun to pretend you are in the story. I recommend this book to all experienced readers, because of the high vocabulary skills and mature content.
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