Sep 28, 2023
‘passionate indictment of the patriarchy and vibrant exaltation of the resilience of women’
The Witches of Vardø is published today in paperback
They will have justice. They will show their power. They will not burn.
First published earlier this year by Manilla Press The Witches of Vardo was a Sunday Times Historical Fiction Book of The Month..
Norway, 1662. A dangerous time to be a woman, when even dancing can lead to accusations of witchcraft. After recently widowed Zigri's affair with the local merchant is discovered, she is sent to the fortress at Vardø to be tried as a witch.
Zigri's daughter Ingeborg sets off into the wilderness to try to bring her mother back home. Accompanying her on this quest is Maren - herself the daughter of a witch - whose wild nature and unconquerable spirit gives Ingeborg the courage to venture into the unknown, and to risk all she has to save her family.
Also captive in the fortress is Anna Rhodius, once the King of Denmark's mistress, who has been sent in disgrace to the island of Vardø. What will she do - and who will she betray - to return to her privileged life at court?
These Witches of Vardø are stronger than even the King. In an age weighted against them, they refuse to be victims. They will have their justice. All they need do is show their power.
Praise for The Witches of Vardo
'Powerful, deeply moving'
The Sunday Times
Kiran Millwood Hargrave
“An intricately woven, timeless novel about prejudice, misogyny, freedom and the power and strength we can find within”
“A passionate indictment of the patriarchy ... a vibrant exaltation of the resilience of women ... Anya Bergman summons a historic witch trial with breathtaking detail and immediacy”
Hannah Kent, author of Burial Rites
“A vividly atmospheric exploration of power in all its forms”
Claire Askew, author of All The Hidden Truths
“Brilliant and powerful. Haunting and beautifully written. A complex and gripping novel reclaiming and retelling the stories of the women accused of witchcraft in Norway. Hugely atmospheric. Read it!”
Liz Hyder, author of The Gifts