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Witch Catcher Hardcover – July 24, 2006

4.5 out of 5 stars 42 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 3-6–As the story launches, 12-year-old Jen and her father are settling into the West Virginia castle they inherited from an eccentric great-uncle. Jen is excited about this new adventure until she meets her father's evil new love interest. Moura, a local antiques dealer, has bewitched Jen's father to gain control of a blown-glass witch catcher inhabited by a certain fairy. Moura and Jen engage in a supernatural tug-of-war as Jen gets drawn into the middle of an age-old battle between fairies and witches. After her cat accidentally releases and befriends the fairy, Kieryn, they face off against Moura and her ilk in a contest to trap the other side forever in the luminous bulbs. Although the story gets off to a slow start, the pace picks up and is sustained with page-turning suspense. Jen makes a brave heroine and a nice foil to Moura's over-the-top evil-stepmother routine. Although some characters are developed more than others, Hahn weaves an engaging story.–Nicki Clausen-Grace, Carillon Elementary School, Oviedo, FL
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Gr. 4-7. Jen and her father have just moved into the enormous old estate left to them by Uncle Thaddeus. The grounds make a fascinating playground for Jen and her cat, Tink, especially the tumbledown stone tower behind the house. Despite an order not to explore there, Jen finds her way inside the tower and up its rickety staircase to a strange room, where she finds odd objects that include a compelling painting of a strange girl. Hanging from the ceiling is a mesmerizingly beautiful glass globe with spout and stopper. When Jen takes and hides the globe, sinister events rapidly unfold. Jen's father becomes bewitched by Moura, an antiquities dealer who desperately desires the globe and who comes between father and daughter. When Tink breaks the globe and the girl depicted in the painting emerges, Jen learns that she must fight Moura's evil hold on both her father and on the world of fairies. A fast-paced, suspenseful fantasy in which an appealing heroine stands against forces seemingly beyond her control. Holly Koelling
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 10 - 12 years
  • Grade Level: 5 - 7
  • Lexile Measure: 710L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Clarion Books (July 24, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0618504575
  • ISBN-13: 978-0618504572
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 6.6 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (42 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,425,412 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By E. R. Bird HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on July 3, 2006
Format: Hardcover
There are some authors that I associate directly with my own childhood. E.B. White. C.S. Lewis. Shel Silverstein. By and large these authors have two things in common. They wrote for children and they are dead. One particular author from my childhood, however, bears only a single similarity to those I've already mentioned. Certainly she writes for children, but she is definitely not dead. Not even close. I remember well, "Wait Till Helen Comes", which remains one of the best-written children's ghost stories out there today. Imagine my delight then when I found that not only is Hahn still writing, but she's still churning out some fairly interesting fare. "Witch Catcher" takes some of Hahn's old stand-bys (not being able to trust your own family members, rare friendships, etc.) and reworks them into something new. Plus there are fairies. Lots of `em.

If your father's spooky old uncle died and left him a gigantic mansion full of beautiful antiques, you'd be thrilled right? Jen certainly is. Not only does she get to live in a kind of West Virginian castle, but there are lots of things to discover. For example, behind the house is a kind of free-standing tower. Despite her dad's warnings to keep away from it, Jen sets about exploring and finds a beautiful iridescent bottle the size of a softball hanging from the ceiling. This domestic happiness is short lived, however, particularly when Jen's dad starts dating an overly sophisticated antiques dealer by the name of Moura. Moura is fascinated with the contents of their uncle's home, but her real goal is to find something she calls a "witch catcher". A witch catcher that sounds suspiciously similar to the sparkly glass thing Jen already discovered.
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A Kid's Review on July 29, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I loved this story. I love stories about witches and fairies and adults who are mean to children, then the children outsmart them. This book has all three themes. Jen and Kieryn make a great team, and especially at the end. Moura is a very vivid character, too, and Tink is a very good character, even though he's a cat. He doesn't say anything, but he's a big part of the story. Kieryn's brother is called Brynn, and he is annoying just like my brothers. The ending is a bit of a cliffhanger.

I wish I could write a story like that. I hope the author writes a sequel soon. I can't wait to read it.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Another good read for fans of Mary D. Hahn! No ghosts here....but fantastical idea of the "witch catcher"....and interesting characters to keep tha reader waiting for the next page to turn. My 9 year old grandson did not even notice or mind that the main character was a girl...
the villains were just devious enough to keep him hooked. A good read.
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By SLR on January 11, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As an adult I like to read the kids' books before giving them as a present. This book is well written, will hold the attention of boys and girls, has just the right amount of magic and has a heart throbbing ending. Great book and a good author.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The Witch Catcher E-Book needs edited. It is full of misspelled words and wrong punctuations. When I informed Amazon they asked me where in the book the mistakes were. I almost laughed because in chapters 21 and 22 there are over 45 misspellings or punc
tuation errors. Other than that I enjoyed the story.
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Format: Kindle Edition
I've read all of M. D. Hahn's books and, as with any favorite author, look forward to reading many more as she writes them. I became acquainted with her through my Kindle and for that I am eternally grateful. I think young readers will enjoy and gain much from these books but be warned that they are all very poorly edited. Frequent word substitutions occur which take away from the read for older readers and will no doubt be confusing for younger readers. "Spell-check" is no substitute for a good editor!
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Format: Kindle Edition
My kid picked up this book at her school library,and I started reading it, and I realized that this book is amazing for kids,not innapropriate at all,and has a heart-warming plot. My kid insisted we buy it on our kindle, and I obliged, because it wasn't ridiculously overpriced,kid loved it,and my kid NEVER reads anything but graphic novels,so huge change…So overall, WONDERFUL book.
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Format: Hardcover
I am ashamed to admit that I only recently discovered Mary Downing Hahn's works, but having enjoyed All the Lovely Bad Ones, I am making up for lost time and have several of her books on my Kindle. In"Witch Catcher", a father and his teenage daughter move away from the suburbs to the mountains of West Virginia. Jen's father has inherited a castle-like estate in a remote place in the mountains, far away from grocery stores, pizza places, and other amenities. Jen and her father don't mind however. Having been motherless for so long, Jen is incredibly close to her father and loves that she gets to spend more time with him, and also explore the cavernous mansion that they have inherited. There's also a mysterious tower in the backyard which appears dilapidated, but does not prevent Jen from wanting to explore it, despite her father's warnings to stay away.

Things would be perfect, except that Jen's father has a new woman in his life, the sinister antiques dealer Moura whom Jen dislikes from the very beginning. Moura appears to have a keen interest in the family home, especially in its contents. Meanwhile Jen has found something amazing, a beautiful glass globe which she prizes as a treasure. It is also the object that Moura seems to be looking for, something Moura terms "the witch catcher". Things start to go horribly wrong when Jen's cat breaks the glass globe unleashing not only an otherworldly entity, but also chaos as rival fae battle for dominance.

I loved how this story was written, with a perfect blend of Gothic mystery and suspense, high atmosphere, and adventure. Hahn even explains at the end how she came to be inspired to write this story. A wonderful and engaging read, young fans of the supernatural will especially relish this offering.
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