The Orphan Witch

A Novel

This title was previously available on NetGalley and is now archived.

Buy this Book on

You must sign in to see if this title is available for request.
Send NetGalley books directly to your Kindle or Kindle app

To read on a Kindle or Kindle app, please add as an approved email address to receive files in your Amazon account. Click here for step-by-step instructions.
Also find your Kindle email address within your Amazon account, and enter it here.
Pub Date 28 Sep 2021 | Archive Date 08 Dec 2021
St. Martin's Press, St. Martin's Griffin


"Mystical, magical, and wildly original...If Alice Hoffman and Sara Addison Allen had a witchy love child, she would be Paige Crutcher. Do not miss this beautifully realized debut!"--- JT Ellison, New York Times bestselling author of Her Dark Lies on The Orphan Witch.

A deeper magic. A stronger curse. A family lost...and found.

Persephone May has been alone her entire life. Abandoned as an infant and dragged through the foster care system, she wants nothing more than to belong somewhere. To someone. However, Persephone is as strange as she is lonely. Unexplainable things happen when she’s around—changes in weather, inanimate objects taking flight—and those who seek to bring her into their family quickly cast her out. To cope, she never gets attached, never makes friends. And she certainly never dates. Working odd jobs and always keeping her suitcases half-packed, Persephone is used to moving around, leaving one town for another when curiosity over her eccentric behavior inevitably draws unwanted attention.

After an accidental and very public display of power, Persephone knows it’s time to move on once again. It’s lucky, then, when she receives an email from the one friend she’s managed to keep, inviting her to the elusive Wile Isle. The timing couldn’t be more perfect. However, upon arrival, Persephone quickly discovers that Wile is no ordinary island. In fact, it just might hold the very things she’s been searching for her entire life.

Answers. Family. Home.

And some things she did not want. Like 100-year-old curses and an even older family feud. With the clock running out, love might be the magic that saves them all.

"Mystical, magical, and wildly original...If Alice Hoffman and Sara Addison Allen had a witchy love child, she would be Paige Crutcher. Do not miss this beautifully realized debut!"--- JT Ellison, ...

Available Editions

EDITION Other Format
ISBN 9781250797377
PRICE CA$22.99 (CAD)

Available on NetGalley

NetGalley Shelf App (EPUB)
Send to Kindle (EPUB)

Average rating from 345 members

Featured Reviews

My heart broke for Persephone early on, and then I grew to love her AND this book. Magical and lovely and touching.

Was this review helpful?

Persephone May grew up in foster care. All she has wanted is a family to love and be loved by, but it eludes her. She can’t find love because something happens to anyone who truly looks at her and she fears she is the problem and moves from town to town as her dream of finding love is shattered in each new town.

When the one friend Persephone has ever made invites her to visit after Persephone is leaving her latest town, she takes Hyacinth up on her offer and heads to Wile Isle. As soon as Persephone steps off the ferry onto Wile Isle, she feels that she may just have found the place she belongs. But first, Persephone needs to learn more about family and home before she can even truly think of settling down in one place once and for all.

Wow! I was under the author’s spell from almost the first page. My heart went out to Persephone and my emotions were up and down along with hers as the story unfolded. This bewitching story will capture you and take you along for the journey as it tugs at your heart and emotions.

Was this review helpful?

The Orphan Witch is a fantastic book about a woman named Persephone May who finds out she is a witch and the journey she ends up going on to break a curse. I really loved the book. The characters were so well written. I especially like Moira and Dorian. The setting is wonderful, you can really feel the vibe the author was going for. The story itself is great, however, I found the ending a bit drawn out. Anyway, it is a great story, and readers who enjoy a great witch story will absolutely love this one.

Was this review helpful?

A novel to be savored. Very much in the vein of Alice Hoffman. In some ways authors way with description reminded me of Ray Bradbury.
This is writing at it's finest. Well paced, lyrical, characters that you root for.
And the best part is, the magic is believable.
Kind of like Field Of Dreams. It seemed possible.
Paige Crutcher will be an author to watch for anyone that loves magical realism and/or appreciates writing as an art. Thank you to the Publisher and Net Galley for the opportunity to spend time with The Orphan Witch.

Was this review helpful?

Ok, so I may be biased. I'm a sucker for the name Peresphone. I love that name. However I know that's its not very professional to give a book five stars because I adore the lead characters name. Thankfully this book deserves 5 stars anyways because I loved it. The world building and magic system were both top notch. I'll admit I was a bit confused by how certain powers worked... But it all made sense by the end. I felt honored that the book didn't feel the need to hold my hand. Can I just say how much I love Moira? Such wonderful characters! I'd love to drink tea with them anytime. More to come closer to publication. 5 out of 5!

Was this review helpful?

The Orphan Witch by Paige Crutcher is an excellent fictional novel that is such a wonderful, magical, and fabulous coming of age story with sorcery, magic, suspense, a dash of romance, and action. I loved it!

I just have to say that I love Persephone May. She has been given a tough plot in her early life, but she is still a genuine, likable, smart, and worthy heroine. I found myself rooting for her from the very beginning. I loved Moira and Dorian as well. Excellent character cast.

Trying to find her place in life, figure out who she is, it is all mucked up and made complicated in the fact that she has been orphaned and is actually a witch! Strange things have been happening to her, making her confused, conflicted, and alone, but a chance offer at finding a place to belong from a friend, she finds that this golden opportunity is a bit more complicated then it originally looks. Here she finds more about her past, her family history, the possibility of discovering and harnessing her powers, finding what she’s really made of, the answers she has been searching for, the love that she had been missing, and so much more. She just may have to hurdle a few obstacles to find that happy ending.

I loved the suspense, the complex and intricate world building and magical elements, the twists, turns, mystery, character development, and of course the ending!

A great book and I highly recommend.

5/5 stars

Thank you NG and St Martin’s Press for this wonderful arc and in return I am submitting my unbiased and voluntary review and opinion.

I am posting this review to my GR and Bookbub accounts immediately and will post it to my Amazon, Instagram, and B&N accounts upon publication.

Was this review helpful?

“It sounded like forgotten words to a once beloved song. It sounded like a place to belong.”

This book was fabulous. As a long time Alice Hoffman fan I’m always searching for the hidden witchy gems in the literary world. I definitely feel that this is one them! Persephone is everything you could want in a conflicted main character. Inexperienced in the ways of Magic and unaware of her lineage she is thrown into a battle of survival against a 100 year curse. A curse that threatens the lives of the family she’s been searching for her whole life. A curse that only she can break. In order to do just that she must piece together the fragments of a past she doesn’t understand and lay to rest the century old fight between the light and the dark.

It’s all here, heartbreak and sorrow, family feuds and betrayal, romance and forbidden love. The suspense and twists were intoxicating, I found myself cringing and rooting sometimes simultaneously throughout the entire tale. I adored the world building, and found myself completely drawn to the island and the realms and every nook and cranny we got to experience. I’m secretly hoping there’s a sequel because I desperately want to know what has become of the characters I ended up loving so much!

Was this review helpful?

OH! This writer reminds me of Alice Hoffman and Deborah Harkness. LOVED this! The story, the atmosphere, the characters were all so rich and detailed. I found it very hard to step away to do menial things like work! I am so looking forward to reading more by Crutcher!!

Was this review helpful?

If you read one book, read this! Great story mixing past and present, witches and curses - travelling through time with a huge mystery to solve with a bit of romance nicely thrown in. Read this in one day, had to keep turning the page and although a very satisfying ending, wanted more!

Was this review helpful?

Such an exciting debut novel! The cover drew me in immediately and I am so glad to have read this! The story of Persephone May goes from tragedy to triumph in a way that is compelling and thoughtful.

These characters have flaws and journeys and I love how I was able to connect with each character. This is not the typical fantasy I read but it was very natural and relatable. I give it four stars because there are ultimately things that I would’ve liked more answers to but I still enjoyed word created on Wile Isle.

A special thanks to NetGalley and St. Martin’s Press/ St. Martin’s Griffin for sharing this digital reviewer copy with me in exchange for my honest thoughts.

Was this review helpful?

The Orphan Witch is a is a wonderful and incredibly rich fantasy novel, so well built and fast paced that I wasn't able to put it down till I reached the end. I was absolutely captivated by the atmosphere, and the characters.

This novel submerges the reader in a landscape so imaginative and detailed that the information of the world building/plot never feels forced, and is never difficult to understand or picture in one's mind. I had an enjoyable time reading this and it held my attention the entire way through that I finished it within the day! I enjoyed every page and thought that the plot/story was very unique. Would recommend to anyone!

Was this review helpful?

Absolutely Addicting. This book went everywhere with me so I could fit a page in here and there while: doing errands, to work, where I never have time to read but squeezed in a few pages before I started my truck to drive home, to the hardware store with my husband where I had to explain to him "No I am not helping you pick out switch plates for the porch. I NEED to read this book"... Paige Crutcher you have written a book that will be on my favorites shelf when I can buy a hard copy. Also you need to call my husband and let him know when your next witch book comes out so we can get our errands done ahead of time. This witch loved this book!

Was this review helpful?

Beautifully written. Could not put it down. I can’t wait to read more by this author! Thank you to the publisher and NetGalley for allowing me to read this book!!

Was this review helpful?

This book is a slow, lyrical burn. It follows a witch, Persephone, who, as a child, bounced from foster home to foster home. Turns out, that bouncing was for a very good reason, as people go completely mad when Persephone looks them in the eye. She is someone desperate for a home, a family, a place to belong. When she gets a chance for all of those things, Persephone is swept up into a fight that is not her own, but it is her destiny. The plot drives along at a brisk clip, even while the conversations are slow, thoughtful things. It can be a bit of a tonally odd combination, but this book is definitely going to find a home with modern fiction fans. It's the type of book that wants you to think it's plot driven, but it is actually powered by the feelings around family and connection.

Was this review helpful?

The Orphan Witch is a suspenseful and magical book! It has lots of elements of suspense, world building, twists, character development and great writing.

Was this review helpful?

Oh, this book was wonderful! I highly enjoyed this book about a woman who thinks that she is alone in the world, but learns that she is not. Delve into the magical world that is this book and lose yourself for a few hours!

Was this review helpful?

Omg! What a magical read. This book is basically Alice Hoffman's Practical Magic series mixed with the Midnight Library!

The twists. The turns! This book has the combination of your fairytale with thriller and fantasy. Truly enjoyable read. Loved it!

Was this review helpful?

What an epic fantasy this is. Persephone is so much more than she first appears. She is magical and lost. Finding herself and her purpose makes for a fantastic story.

Was this review helpful?

What a magical ride from start to finish. I was transported onto Wile Isle each time I picked up this book. Such a great book and talented writer. Thanks Netgalley!

Was this review helpful?

Full of magic and suspense this enchanting novel is one to savor . Persephone May is our protagonist and has lived alone most of her life . Living in different places most of her life .One day she meets someone who changes her life and goes to idyllic town to live with king lost relatives . But there is more to what the eye can see. I loved this book and the characters in it. Don’t miss this one !

Was this review helpful?

What an incredible book! Original, strong characters and great atmosphere. I wanted to be on Wile Isle. I loved every second I spent reading about Persephones journey to find out who she is. If you like witchy things I highly recommend this book.
Thanks to netgalley and the publisher for allowing me to read this book in exchange for an honest review.

Was this review helpful?

For those who have felt friendless and orphaned and as if they’ll never belong, this orphan is a sister at heart. She breaks the mold when she leaves to visit cousins she never knew living on an island of magic only to learn she has to break that world to save all those who have lived there at great cost to herself. The cost of magic is steep, yet our heroine finds a way toward a happier life. Very imaginative and empowering.

Was this review helpful?

Readers who liked this book also liked: