So I originally had a big ol’ rant about why most modern books-with-witches suck because they’re almost always trying to appropriate the Silver RavenWolf sort of Wicca which is COMPLETELY RIDICULOUS and actually kind of insulting but then I remembered that every religion has been appropriated badly and that I shouldn’t get pissed off because someone thinks that calling someone a “Wiccan” instead of a “witch” is better because it’s less scary/super-duper cool and if they don’t bother doing any research or even trying to get the details right because it’d make for a more boring story anyway, naked frolicking aside, and then I deleted everything and wrote this sentence instead. So…just know that I take my witches (probably overly) seriously, and that I like the ones that are more based on the Ye Olde version of witches than the Modern Interpretation (aka Wiccan Free-For-All).
Note: If you want to know more about real-world witches and Wiccans (and other neo-pagan religions), you may be interested in reading Drawing Down the Moon by Margot Adler. It’s fun to read AND informative!
Some books with ANASTASIA-APPROVED! witches in them:
- The Headless Cupid by Zilpha Keatley Snyder (1973). One of my favorite YA books EVER, and not just because of Amanda-the-maybe-witch.
- Andromeda Klein by Frank Portman (2009). Although maybe Andromeda would be considered more of an occultist than a witch.
- The Letter, The Witch and the Ring by John Bellairs (1976). Also any of his Lewis Barnavelt books, which have really great characters, creepy storylines, and excellent writing.
- The Witches by Roald Dahl (1983). The movie is really good, too: Angelica Huston is the witch queen!
- Anything Diana Wynne Jones does. Obviously.
- Her Wiccan, Wiccan Ways by Traci Hall (2008), aka the one that does Wicca-as-fiction right.
- Phyllis Reynolds Naylor’s Witch series (1980-2005?). Seriously spooky– I think it actually gave me nightmares when I was younger.
- The Harry Potter series by JK Rowling. Duh.
- Terry Pratchett’s Discworld series has some fun witches in it, including Equal Rites (1987).
- Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett (1990). Agnes Nutter!
- Stardust by Neil Gaiman (1999) has some scary witch sisters in it.
- The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L Frank Baum (1900). Heh.
Do you like books with witches in them? Or do you just get irritated and insulted (if you’re a witch yourself, I guess)?
Thanks to Once Upon a Bookshelf for list-y inspiration!