Audie Award Nominee, Fiction, 2013
Judgment of the Witch
The Carolinas, 1699: The citizens of Fount Royal believe a witch has cursed their town with inexplicable tragedies - and they demand that beautiful widow Rachel Howarth be tried and executed for witchcraft. Presiding over the trial is traveling magistrate Issac Woodward, aided by his astute young clerk, Matthew Corbett. Believing in Rachel's innocence, Matthew will soon confront the true evil at work in Fount Royal....
After hearing damning testimony, magistrate Woodward sentences the accused witch to death by burning. Desperate to exonerate the woman he has come to love, Matthew begins his own investigation among the townspeople. Piecing together the truth, he has no choice but to vanquish a force more malevolent than witchcraft in order to save his beloved Rachel - and free Fount Royal from the menace claiming innocent lives.
©2002 Robert McCammon (P)2012 Audible, Inc.
“Edoardo Ballerini performs this story of accusation and fear flawlessly. He effortlessly switches his pitch, accents, and timbre to suit the unfortunate Rachel Howarth, the endless curious Corbett, and the various determined characters, good and evil.” (AudioFile)
"a compelling story that should find a wide readership. Highly recommended for popular fiction collections." (Library Journal)
"An excellent story, full of tension and suspense.” (Stephen King)
I love all genres of books. However, when I listen to audio books as I clean, garden, drive they are better with a lot of heat!
This book was outright amazing, the only comparison I can draw for this novel would be something like Law & Order: Witch Trials. Thereby seeing the first lines of the novel indicating the location in the Carolinas, I hear the distinctive DUN! DUN! in my head just thinking about it. There is definitely some shady dealings going on in the town of Fount Royal where an accused witch is on trial and the one and only penalty for cavorting with the Devil is death by flames. For a town that deems itself holy and wants nothing more but to purge it's self from the presence of evil, nearly everyone in the town seems to be guilty of something. But down the rabbit hole Robert McCammon takes us, who is to blame for the atrocities that have been committed in this town? Did the accused truly murder her husband and the Reverend? Is the owner of the town a silent schemer? Does the Dr. in the town have ulterior motives? Does the new Reverend that arrives to the town care too much about lustful ideals than saving souls? What's up with all the rain? Why does my stomach hurt right now? All but the last two questions get answered in this epic book. This book is really long, and I mean REALLY long, but it is extremely enrapturing. This book isn't for the feint of heart, if you are the occasional reader this may not fit the bill for your wants and desires, but if you like to be kept guessing the whole time, it is sure to please.
Robert McCammon makes every detail matter and I sopped it up like I was eating biscuits and gravy. Sometimes picking out details that I would read knowing that there was an obvious reason why it was mentioned, but having to wait a while until the answer comes to fruition. I'm very glad to know that Matthew Corbett makes an appearance in 3 more novels! I'm already ready to crack open the next volume in the series. I read this book right after finishing Wolf's Hour by McCammon, but this book was a completely different animal. Robert paints pictures in your mind that you can't help but see clear as day, and the dialogue is also quite amazing, as his attention to detail in the character's speech, and talking style is painstakingly rendered. I can only imagine how long it must have been for the author to craft this masterpiece. Also, I'll give a nod to Robert for not including so much detail to the main character being quite the slut that Michael Galatin from the Wolf's Hour was. I have to give McCammon a lot of credit on this novel, and I don't feel guilty in the slightest from awarding this book 5 stars, which is not something I do all willy nilly!
Edoardo Ballerini was great with the delivery of the story.
I haven't read the print version, but this one is wonderfully narrated !
I don't think I can single out just the one, there were so many !
It was so smooth I didn't notice it , which is the highest compliment I can give !
This is a very very long listen, and at times it may appear to lag, but it all builds to a story that couldn't be told with any fewer words. I enjoyed listening to it, and trying to imagine what it might have been like to live in those times. Well told.
Books are a mainstay of my life! Even the preschoolers and toddlers in my care, have several hundred books, which I rotate based on need.
I thoroughly enjoy historical novels and this one was not disappointing. The author gave the reader clear pictures of life in 1699. He also described the characters quite well. But as much as I enjoyed the many different plot lines, those became part of the reason why I had some difficulty toward the end of the book.
I will not give away the ending. However, the relationship between the primary figures was something that was built up throughout this very lengthy novel. The ending left me wishing the author had done more. Perhaps the relationship I hoped for will surprise me in the other Matthew Corbett books.
I haven't heard him before, even though my Audible library collection consists of well over a few hundred books. After listening to Mr. Ballerini, I will be looking for books he has narrated. He has an excellent command of various accents and it was truly a delight to experience such a talented narrator.
Occasionally I laughed, at times the violence was exceptionally sobering, but from my history classes, I am certain the author did enough research into the miserable lives people had during that period of time, to be accurate.
Other than being disappointed with the ending, the story was so rich and the narrator was so excellent I purchased the next several books in the series!
I have not listened to other performances but it was great.
Long book, but I really loved every minute of it.
Yes. I would listen to this again. The characters just come to life. I could feel, taste, smell, and hear them.
I loved the characters.
I loved the Scottish servant. She was my favorite.
I have so often been thoroughly engrossed in the beginning of a novel, investing high hopes in its potential, only to be let down by the author who seemed to lose any idea of where he or she is going (Night Film comes to mind). I hoped that this book would not break my heart this way, as I really loved it from the start. I was so happy that this book was true to the story right up to the very end. In fact, the final sentence wrapped up the final loose thread of the novel, and everything made sense. I loved this book, and was transported to a time and place in a rare way. The narrator is a marvel...I often think when I listen to a new Audible book "...now this is the best narrator I have ever heard", and then someone like Edoardo Ballerini comes along to make me forget the rest. He is spectacular. I really did not want to read a series, but I finished this book last night and will buy the next book today. It was that good. Just a great book, folks.
Say something about yourself!
Overall, it was an interesting story and kept my attention. At times though, it really felt like it was dragging; therefore, I highly recommend listening to it on 1.25x speed because it's very long and also, the narration is painfully slow. Another issue is that the writer seems to have an inordinate fixation on male genitalia, and at times, uses language that almost certainly would never have been spoken by folks in 1699. This sort of breaks the illusion of the storytelling.
I would recommend it. It was nice to see such devotion to the truth in the face of social self-righteousness.
The young clerk Matthew. He had a fairly modern take on things in a very dark time. People really believed in witchcraft. So many were killed as witches to assuage the fears of fools.
Even though it was set in a long gone world, the persecution of women by a whole town of ignorant and fearful people who overwhelming believe in their fear-based religion rather than take a look at something reality-based. I guess I felt a resonance in today's world.
Interesting story. Set in a long ago era, it was full of fairly contemporary people. the money-grabbing baron, the truth seeker, the victim of abuse, the law, the chorus of "true believers"
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