Cover Image: The Witching Tree

The Witching Tree

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Member Reviews

The Witching Tree is the third book in the Natalie Lockhart series by Alice Blanchard. The story is set in an isolated town in New York called, Burning Lake. This town and its dark history make a chilling setting that you will be drawn into as you learn about the old curse and the witching tree. When the founder of the town's oldest coven is brutally killed, it sets off not only the search for who was responsible, but also more questions about the history of the town. Detective Natalie Lockhart has been through so much in a short period of time and we see how it is affecting her professionally and personally. This book made me cry at the end and I can't get that next book fast enough. This has become a favorite series of mine.
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AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA! I absolutely howled at the end of this one. Alice Blanchard how can you leave me on a cliffhanger like that?!

Truth be told, I picked this up because it had witch in the title. I didn't know it was part of a series and as I'm a commitment-phobe I almost set this aside. And once I did decide to just go for it, the first few pages were very "cozy mystery" and I wondered if this wasn't for me. But then we got to the murder. And it was so gruesome, so gory that I was 100% committed. In fact, I had a hard time putting this book down. And now it looks like the next book isn't coming until July 2023?! How will I make it until then????? But in all seriousness, I really enjoyed this one and feel like it you wanted to jump into the series at book 3 like I did you'll have absolutely no issue.
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When I started reading The Witching Tree I was unaware it was apart of a series. So I went and read all the books in order. The series is amazing and this book was a great addition. I was on the edge of my seat the entire book and couldn't put it down. Highly recommend this book.
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A burned out detective, Natalie, is leaving the force. She lives in a town with a long history of witches and wiccan practitioners.
A friend, who was a practicing wiccan is murdered in a twisted way. It pulls Natalie right back into it as she works to solve this mystery
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Really enjoyed reading the next book in this series. The character development continues to be well done and the stories are thoughtful and compelling. Looking forward to the next one in the series! Thanks to NetGalley and the publishers for the digital ARC.
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Way too gruesome of a start for me. I'm always intrigued by witch books, but honestly someone getting run over by a train in the first chapter is just too much for me.
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Good story!!

Description
Welcome to Burning Lake, a small, isolated town with a dark history of witches and false accusations. Now, a modern-day witch has been murdered, and Detective Natalie Lockhart is reluctantly drawn deep into the case, in this atmospheric mystery from Alice Blanchard, The Witching Tree.

As legend has it, if you carve your deepest desire into the bark of a Witch Tree, then over time as the tree grows, it will swallow the carvings until only a witch can read them.

Until now.

Detective Natalie Lockhart gained unwanted notoriety when she and her family became front and center of not one, but two sensational murder cases. Now she’s lost her way. Burned out and always looking over her shoulder, Natalie desperately thinks that quitting the police force is her only option left.
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Many thanks to Minotaur and net galley for the opportunity to read The Witching Tree.
Excellent installment in a first rate series.  I do recommend reading them in order.
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Witches, mystery, murder in a small town, a mysterious tree,  legends, police detectives, romance. All in one book? Yes please! This atmospheric book was well developed in plot(s) and characters and part of a series, which I did not know when I read it. I am going to definitely read the other two now.  

I won’t go into all the details and spoilers, but this book kept my interest up and I wanted more! Alice Blanchard must be working her magic for a book 4. I will remain hopeful. 


Thank to St. martin’s press Minotaur Books and NetGalley for a digital copy of this book.
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A witch is murdered in a small town and the detective on the case makes some dark discoveries. Haunting 3rd installment in this series. Enjoyable!. 3 Stars
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Thank you Netgalley for the advance reader copy of The Witching Tree by Alice Blanchard in exchange for an honest review. I really wish I had read the first two books before I read this one. On one hand I'm kinda annoyed that there is a surplus of stories about women who have troubled pasta and tortured lives, unable to find happiness until a good man helps her, but on the other hand, I think there are so many because there are a lot of troubled women, unfortunately. I was really feeling this mystery novel and got attached to the characters. I'll have to check out the previous books.
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First things first: this is the third book in the Natalie Lockhart series, but can be read as a standalone. I have not read the previous books in the series and had no problem picking up this book and diving in.

Natalie is awoken one morning and called to a brutal crime scene: Veronica Manes, a beloved local Wiccan community leader has been brutally murdered. But after two hard cases, Natalie is trying to take it slow. Still, she can't help but be drawn into Veronica's world, where she ran a historical coven, was working on a new book about local history and was helping some down-on-thier-luck local residents try and get back on their feet. Any one of these angles could have lead to her murder, the question is, who and why? And, can Natalie figure it out without putting her own life in danger, yet again?

Just so you know, this one ends on a cliffhanger! You'll be waiting intensely for the fourth book after finishing it.

This book was fast-paced right from the beginning: the opening scene depicts Veronica's murder, which is horrific but well-written. Then, the list of suspects and motives bursts onto the scene and I just got swept up into the story as Natalie and her team looked into a case where they really started from nothing and put together an entire case. I was turning pages furiously. 

Natalie was a great character too. She was conflicted, dedicated, someone who was working through problems, but trying to do the right thing. I definitely want to see more of her and will be following this series to see how she grows. I am certainly rooting for her!

If you're looking for a mystery/thriller that has a really great atmosphere with a plot line that has good bite and great characters - this is your book! You'll fall in love with this series!
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Wow! I wish I read the previous two books of the series! I liked the intense, dark, depressive, haunting tone of the author! I always keen on reading about broken but tough characters’ traumatic stories and I quickly caught up the back story of Natalie Lockhart: her sister Willow’s ritualistic murder by her own witch-curious friends and the way they pinned the murder on Willow’s boyfriend Justin who has gone to prison for 20 years for the crime he hasn’t committed!  She also solved the biggest serial killer case in the American northeast! But the attention of media, her past demons threaten her peace! Thankfully her new boyfriend,33 years old, Rose Security Software founder Hunter saves her from the threats, providing her a secluded, quality life style in his mansion. Now Natalie is ready to resign from her job at police force even though she feels a little agitated to leave her childhood friend/ confidante/ boss Luke Pittman behind. But the book opens with blood freezing scene: Veronica Manes, the town’s best known practicing witch, wakes up staring at the blank white sky, finding herself in the middle of nowhere, surrounded by woods and snow, shackled to the railroad tracks on the edge of the town, wearing a Halloween dress: a caricature of witch : a long black costume and a tall wide-brimmed hat straight out of the Wizard of Oz and she hears the approaching the train sound… You may guess the end of her story and who will investigate her murder! Yes, Luke needs Natalie’s expertise: ultra religious groups who are fighting against the coven of the witches may be related with this murder scheme. Burning Lake, New York is already a haunted place with shameful secret: in 1712, three innocent women were executed as witches: Abigail Stuart, Victoria Forsyth, Sarah Hutchins. So does history repeat itself?  I love the pacing, the intriguing love triangle between characters, the gory-dark- haunted depictions, jaw dropping moments fasten your heartbeat and the cliffhanger at the end broke my heart so bad! I don’t only have to read the previous books, I also have to read probably not written yet next book ASAP! Im hooked! I want more!
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I'm not a fan of the woods at night, but I am a fan of Alice Blanchard and Natalie Lockhart.

As a nurse, I can imagine how Natalie feels - burned out. It's probably what made me empathetic to Natalie right from the beginning of this one. And like seeing a favorite patient pass away, Natalie is rejuvenated to her career when one of her favorite town residents is murdered. She'd determined and strong - a fierce to be reckoned with. And I love that about her.

This book was fast paced, a quick read, and I enjoyed it!
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Right from page one of this thriller, I was absolutely hooked and related so fundamentally to the murder victim. While I found some of the writing to be a little bit disjointed, I really enjoyed the main characters and the setting was perfection. So many good topics were included in the crime itself: a modern-day witch is found dead chained to the train tracks outside of her town. A real page-turner!
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I read this not knowing that there were other books in the series, but it was still a great read. It was not confusing, and easy to understand due to the summaries of the previous books. A simple, if fun, detective book.
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It was a quick read and entertaining. The plot was interesting but I did not feel like it was exactly as gritty or suspenseful as I was expecting. 
3 stars
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I wanted this book to be creepy and atmospheric, but instead I got a middle of the road detective novel.
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First of all, HOLY CRAP! What am I supposed to do now!! Ok, back to the review. This is the third book in a murder mystery series following Natalie, who is a homicide detective. The town of Burning Lake where Natalie lives, is a town steeped in superstition and history about witches and a curse. Natalie is once again thrown into a high-profile case when one of the leaders of a coven is found brutally murder on the train tracks and that is just the begin of this dark case.
	This story is good, there is so much folklore and bizarre history in the town that it plays so much into the investigation, and you can't really tell if it is superstition, or they actually have mysteries witches and a curse that is affecting the town. Natalie has a very dark past and so much trauma in her family, that it really affects everything she does and how she deals with others. She has lost so much and is trying to figure out how to move on. The murder case was interesting had a lot of twists and questions that go unanswered, misleading in several directions. There was a bit of a lull in the middle but with this being a murder mystery I expected it to be a slower paced book. The writing was good, and the story was very interesting. The ending had such a huge cliffhanger and just came out of nowhere and totally shocked me and I loved it. I don't know what I am going to do if there is not going to be another book. I would highly recommend checking this series out if you like murder mysteries mixed with a haunting history of witches.
Trigger warnings: murder, dismemberment, animal abuse, suicide
I received this advanced ebook, via Netgalley. This review is my own honest opinion.
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I absolutely loved this book. I read it around halloween which was perfect for the atmosphere the book thrives in. The connection with Wicca and history in the town coupled with a recent murder made the story really interesting. I’m keeping my eyes peeled for Blachard’s next book.
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