Cover Image: The Age of Witches

The Age of Witches

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A Pleasurable Period Piece…
Set in Gilded Age New York, The Age of Witches by Louisa Morgan is the story of Annis Allington, a soon to be of age young women with her own dreams and goals, but a pawn, as were most girls from privileged families in that day, in both her father’s world of wealth and power and her stepmother’s world of magic. Little does Annis know that within her runs the blood of two lines of an ancient witch who used her magic for good but was hung by fearful and malicious people. Her death set the course for her prodigy, some would use their magic altruistically and others would use it for personal gain. Annis must decide whether her dreams are worth sacrificing the good in her heart.

Louisa has created a wonderfully, realistic period piece that transports you back to the late 1800’s, a time where everything seemed to be gilded in gold yet many times was corrupted underneath. This metaphor for the life is similar to what Annis’s stepmother Francis, a witch who has chosen the dark magic, has cultivated. Annis is forced to submit, against her will, to her stepmother’s schemes, or risk loosing her beloved stallion. While Annis has been ignorant of the power she possess, her coming of age prompts her aunt Harriet, who practices benevolent magic, to take a more active role in helping Annis learn the truth of who she really is.

The Age of Witches is a very entertaining and enjoyable read. The historical details that Louisa includes add richness to an already captivating story and the way she weaves the magical aspect through the plot make it seem quite plausible. It is a wonderful blend emotions that will have you spell-bound one moment and remind you that we all are given choices as to the kind of person we will be the next. Best of all, The Age of Witches is a teen appropriate tale of intrigue, first love, and self-discovery that can be enjoyed by all ages.

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As a thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for providing me with an advanced reader copy I shall give an honest review of Louisa Morgan’s “ The Age of Witches” I enjoyed this novel immensely for one it was set at the turn of the 19th century in New York City. The Gilded Age has held my attention this year so far as many novels I have read have been set in this time period. I found this novel using “novel” ideas at the time and applying it in a timeless manner. Especially when it came to women and power. Using the archetype of the witch as a symbol for independence and power Morgan uses the fantastical element of the Witch to explore this and more. The novel had slight fantasy elements but was rooted in reality. The magic system was defined very clearly and was something I appreciated. The characters were strong and developed. The storyline was well developed and held my attention to the end. Overall I recommend this for fans of historical fiction, fantasy, and stories with strong feminist leads. I give this a strong four out of five stars.

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The setting of this book was delightful and I loved the relationships between the female characters. I enjoyed that the witchcraft wasn't the main part of the book as well. The characters were far more integral to the story than the magic.

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I didn't get around to reading this until way late, but I enjoyed this a lot.

To be fair, I'm so fascinated by witches and that culture and the stories that come along with those things. This book? Had all of that and more. I loved the strong female characters that took center-stage, I loved the twisty plot and the magical and descriptive writing. I haven't read more of this author, but I definitely will be now.

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Thank you to Netgalley and the publishers for allowing me to read this title in exchange for an honest review.
I have to say that this was just not for me. I was reading, but I could feel myself forcing it. I read all the words just to get through them like it was a chore, but I cared little for its content.

For me, the story was too much and not enough at the same time. Louisa Morgan is attempting to tackle several different focuses all at once: romance, witchcraft, history, family drama, a few different age groups. All this is certainly possible to pull off, but it just wasn't here. To me, it just wasn't weaved together well. The characters themselves were, in my opinion, not complex enough. They each have one defining characteristic or goal and that's more or less their focus. It just wasn't enough for me based on how much I read.

I can't necessarily rate this book fairly because I DNF'ed at 12%. I also realized when reading this book that perhaps witchcraft is not my preferred topic to read about. However, lovers of witches, witchcraft, and even family drama might really enjoy this.

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I really enjoyed this book. This is the classic struggle between good and evil so to speak. It’s about three strong women. One good, one evil, and one stuck in between trying to find her way. If you enjoy historical fiction with magic and witches then this is for you.

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I am a big fan of the author's writing and have read her previous work. Thank you to the publisher and to Net Galley for the opportunity My review opinions are my own. This is a fascinating read and a book I was unable to part with until completion. .The details the author writes of brings the charcters and story so alive for the reader that it transcends current time. The author writes so atmospheric of the setting and charcters that you feel immersed in the story from the beginning.

We are introduced to 1890 and the Gilded Age of New York . Our main charcter is Harriet Bishop. Harriet is a descendant of Bridget Bishop of Salem. Bridget Bishop was known for being a powerful witch and passing down her gifts through her relatives. Harriet has the gift of sight and is a very accomplished herbalist and green witch. She prefers to use her magic for good .

Her cousin, Frances has used dark magic to work her way up in society by marrying a wealthy widower. But she is determined to make it into even a higher status by marrying his daughter, Annis to a lord in England. Annis is a wonderful charcter, very independent with a great love of horses. She has no interest in marriage and only wants to be around her horses and have her independence. Annis has her own love interest and wants no interference in her plans. Harriet is unknown to Annis as Frances does not want her good magic to interfere with her upbringing in the dark magic. Annis is unknown that she is also a Bishop and has the capabilities of being a powerful witch like Harriet. Harriet must find a way to stop Frances before Annis is harmed by this dark magic and ends up in a loveless marriage taken away from all she loves.

I love this book ! The witches are powerful and their strengths are many. The details of the story are quite exquisite. The author truly captures the time and place for her readers. The charcters are fascinating and captured this reader. Louise Morgan is one of my favorite authors and I cannot wait to read her next book. This was so beautifully crafted that it was enjoyable cover to cover. Review cross posted. A most excellent highly recommended read.

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The Age of Witches (Hachette, April 2020) is a book about family, love, and responsibility. Veteran author Louisa Morgan's deft hand is practically invisible as she weaves a tale of two witches--one light, one dark--fighting to influence the next generation. 

NEW YORK, 1890s--The descendants of Bridget Bishop are alive and well, quietly practicing their magic two hundred years after the death of their famous Salem ancestor. Harriet, the good Bishop, has watched from afar as Frances, the dark Bishop, has used the unholier aspects of the craft to achieve selfish ends, blackening her own heart in the process. Now, with young Annis--Harriet's estranged niece and Frances's stepdaughter--growing into her own abilities, it seems like Frances is willing to tarnish her heart as well, in the name of familial advancement. Frances wants Annis to marry a titled Englishman to lend stature to the family, while Annis wants to become a prominent horse breeder and businesswoman in her own right. When Harriet discovers Frances is willing to use dark magic to influence Annis, she knows she needs to put a stop to it--otherwise Annis AND Frances will each pay a steep price, including, possibly, their lives.

As a Salem resident I've seen the Salem Witches trope A LOT, and I have a love/hate relationship with these I was a little wary when the book opened with Bridget Bishop--the most famous of the Salem "witches" saving, perhaps, Tituba--on the morning of her impending execution. However, while the characters do frequently refer to themselves as Bishops, descended from Bridget's line, very little of the story harkens back to Old Salem. Instead, we get a fresh take on witchcraft in the Gilded Age, complete with three powerful protagonists, each pursuing her own ends. All the better, I think! Morgan's writing is easy to sink into and the plot took more than one unexpected turn—just when you think the story is over, there are 100 more pages leading to an unexpected but satisfying conclusion. I have never read Morgan in the past, but based on this reading, I would be interested in checking out past and future titles by this author!

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Thank you to the publishers, author and NetGalley for a free copy of this book!

I really enjoyed this book, and planning on finding what else Louisa Morgan has written! It was easy to become immersed in this story line. The detail and the strength of her characters was wonderful. Often I find multiple point of views becomes too confusing but for once, I did not have that problem and I loved getting to know each of her characters. The historical accuracy was nice, too- it made it for a rather realistic fantasy.

I would 100% recommend giving this book a try!

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I have read all of Louisa Morgan's books and this was the best yet!
I love magic and witchcraft based books and this was right up my alley. This novel was about a family of women descendant from hanged Salem witch Bridget Bishop and centers around the traditional American based witchcraft lore.
Set in the late 1800's, we follow 3 generations, Harriet the older wise witch herbalist, Francis her younger cousin who practises dark magic and Annis her niece a young woman just discovering her power.

The story centers around Francis' desire to move up in society at any cost. She plans on marrying her step daughter Annis to a British lord in order to no longer be shunned by the best New York society for being "new money". Annis on the other hand, is a modern woman desiring not marriage, but to become a world known horse breeder. Francis decides to employ dark magic to control Annis and get what she wants.
It's up to Harriet to try and intervene and save Annis from her stepmother and introduce her to her own magic.

I found the book such an enjoyable read and it reminded me of my favorite ALice Hoffman books.

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I would like to thank NetGalley, Redhook Books, and author Louisa Morgan for providing me with an ARC of this book.

The Age of Witches was such a fun read! I love anything relating to witchcraft/Paganism, so when I saw this gorgeous cover, I wanted in. To see these strong female characters brought to life was an awesome experience. The writing in this novel is strong, direct, and immersive. The pacing of the book was a little slow, but the well-presented history kept my attention. I realized after starting that this was book two in a series, so now I’m going to go back and read the first one!

Thank you again to those named above for the opportunity to read and review this ARC!

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This book took me a while to start. In the beginning it didn’t grab my attention but after reading a few pages I couldn’t put it down. The strong independent good witch was very refreshing. I absolutely loved the characters and the storyline.

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It took me a little while to do this review because I didn't want to read it without reading the first book in the series which is A Secret History of Witches.

I did enjoy the first book but I have to say the second book was absolutely better! The writing style keeps you interested in the book and the characters are well thought out.

If you like reading about magic, witches and fantasy in general def read this!

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The Age of Witches was a fun, suspenseful read that made me want to read more by this author! I love the alternating POVs and the authors style of writing. But I especially loved the attention to witchy detail woven throughout. This was a 5-star read for me!

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Although several of Morgan's earlier novels are already on my TBR, this one is actually my first experience with her writing. Told across a few perspectives, the bulk of the book is set in 1890, dealing with the legacy of a witch killed in Salem and the two lines of magic running through her ancestors. Harriet and Frances both are established witches - and though they are only distantly related, they do not share a common approach to their craft. It sets them at odds with one another - and often with other people paying the consequences.

But it's not really a high=drama story in fact, it's really just the opposite. It's rather slow and the turns are easy to see coming. I never found myself actively disliking it, but never truly loving it either. The characters do come to life, and the relationships, though predictable, are satisfying. The rhyming cantrips are kind of fun, but the magical lineage itself takes too long to be fully explained and it seems rather senseless that is drawn out for that long. The slower pacing of the novel may be just what some readers like and the historical period feels well-researched. The ending suggests the potential of a sequel, and while I would be curious to see what happens next, I don't think I will be first in line to read it.

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My Thoughts:
I enjoyed this book so much. Even now, with all of the trouble I’ve been having focusing and allowing myself to really immerse in a book, this one grabbed me.

If there is one way to get me into what is otherwise a straight work of human interest-type fiction, it is to add witches. And what is so wonderful about this particular work of fiction is that it happens during the Gilded Age (the year 1890, specifically), which I personally haven’t seen a whole lot of. I feel like it is more common for this type of story to take place in the middle ages, during the Witch Trials, or in modern times, so the change of venue was greatly appreciated.

I always appreciate a good witch story, because no matter how it is told, or how we are supposed to feel about the witch in question, it is always, at it’s core, about humanity’s (and more specifically men’s, sorry bruhs – although unfortunately women fall in here too) fear of women. They fear women generally, and they fear powerful, self-sufficient women specifically. Unfortunately this fear continues to permeate society even now, and it crosses borders of race, religion, ethnicity, and even gender. And so long as women are viewed with fear, suspicion, and hostility, I think we will continue to find stories of witches finding, reclaiming, or losing their powers incredibly titillating.

The story follows three descendants of Bridget Bishop, a witch hanged during the Salem Witch Trials who has vowed to always watch over her family line. The three descendants are Harriet, her very distant cousin Frances (who actually descends from an off-shoot of the Bishop line who are known for their turn toward darker magic), and Frances’ step-daughter Annis, who is actually Harriet’s grand-niece(? – I think. That sounds right. They’re all distantly interrelated, anyway.) Frances has plans for Annis, and she isn’t above using dark magic to make sure her plans come to fruition. Annis, with Harriet’s assistance has to make a stand against her stepmother.

The writing is really strong, although I did feel like the ending was dragged out a bit more than it needed to be. Otherwise, I feel like this story really sucked me in. It took me about 4 days to finish – normally, that would be excessive, but given current circumstances and the fact that I currently have the attention span of a squirrel on uppers, I’d say it’s pretty good. I found myself opening the kindle back up most times that I felt I had a spare moment to read just a little more of the story, so…I’d say that’s a positive.

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A special thanks to NetGalley and Redhook Publishing for a free digital ARC in exchange for my honest review.


Set in the late 1800's, independent teen, Annis, is due to marry - and she want nothing to do with it. She comes from a long line of witches, including a mother who uses her powers to try to force Annis into marriage and an aunt who takes her under her magical wing. The Age of Witches is a beautifully written tale of female and family struggles that was a delightful escape to read.

What I liked:
○ Strong female characters!
○ Immersive and direct writing style.
○ Concept - witches, women, magic - what's not to like?
○ Once the pace picked up, I was hooked.
○ History was well-presented.
○ If there were to be a sequel, I'd definitely read it :)

What I didn't like:
○ Like a lot of reviewers, I found the pacing of the book to be very slow.
○ The dialogue was cheesy and predictable at times.
○ More for fans of historical fiction/romance than magical realism or paranormal fantasy.

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Thank you, Louisa Morgan, NetGalley, and Redhook books for the opportunity to read this book!

It is official. I will read anything that Louisa Morgan pens. The Age of Witches by Louisa Morgan is her third book and I hope there are many more. This book takes place in 1890 and introduces Harriet Bishop. Harriet is a descendant of Bridget Bishop of Salem. Harriet has “the knowing” and a very accomplished herbalist. She believes in helping people. Her distant cousin, Frances has used dark magic to work her way up in society by marrying a wealthy widower. But she is determined to make it into higher society by marrying his daughter, Annis to a lord in England. Problem is, Annis has no interest in marriage and only wants to be around her horses. Harriet must stop Frances before Annis is harmed by this dark magic.

Bravo. I love these books by Louisa Morgan. I saw a lot of reviews that comment on how slow they are…maybe to them, but not to me. I love the detail. I feel so immersed in her stories. I want to be friends with her characters. In fact, it kind of breaks my heart that they are fictional. Sigh…

Anyway, I LOVE Annis! She is spirited and passionate. Her love for horses brought tears to my eyes. I also love how she wants to be loved for herself, not because of magic or because of money. Harriet is also wonderful. I would love for her to be my teacher. She is kind and knowledgeable. Her guidance is heartwarming.

Also. WITCH BATTLES. Oh. My. God. I was on the edge of my seat. My husband said, “Hey—babe, you haven’t blinked in a while.” Yes, it is that good.

Louisa Morgan gets another 5 perfect stars from me! She hasn’t let me down yet. I can’t wait for her next book!

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The Age of Witches by Louisa Morgan
Book Review by Dawn Thomas

448 Pages
Publisher: Redhook Books
Release Date: April 7, 2020

Sci Fi & Fantasy, Witches, 1890s New York and England

I started this book thinking it was going to be a memoir type of book, but I was pleasantly wrong. The book begins with the hanging of Bridget Bishop in 1692. The story then jumps to 1890 with Harriet, a fifty-year old witch collecting herbs. She sees Annis, a seventeen-year old girl riding a large black stallion. The girl is a distant relative of hers and she is proud to see how she is grown into a young woman. Frances, Annis’ step-mother, wants her to marry and gain a title so that she can advance into New York society. Annis is only interested in her horses and creating a future creating a bloodline she can be proud of, but Frances has other plans for her. She forces Annis to go to England to find a suitable husband. There they meet James, Lord Rosefield.

The book is written in third person. Considering the size of the book, I thought it was a quick read. At times the story moved a bit slow, but I had to know what was going to happen next. The characters were developed so that the reader would love them or despise them. This was the first book by this author I have read but it certainly will not be the last.

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Thank you to #netgalley and Redhook for the advanced copy for my honest review!

I love reading about the era of the witch trials and learning more about it - the story started out very intriguing and even getting to explain the dynamic of the family tree between Harriet and Frances - and Annis. However the story lost me after the introduction of Annis and her love interest and in depth talk of horse breeding. I really wanted to like this story but I was unable to even finish this despite wanting to!

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