Hello my little Sunshines, I am super excited to be shining a spotlight on an incredible series today, Web of Witches by Samantha Grosser. I have read this series from day one, and absolutely loved it! I’m currently reading the third book (review for that to come next week, or before) and just like the previous two, it’s dark and magically addictive. The Web of Witches (which used to be known as; ‘Pages of Darkness’) is a three-book series – even though I am hoping there will be more – it follows the generations of one very special family who just happen to be Witches. With the third and final book set to be released next week, what better time to tell you all about the series, plus I have a sneaky excerpt of book three; The Shadow Witch.
Honestly, this series is amazing, I hope you will love it as much as I do, I can’t wait to share it with you!
“One of the most intriguing and unique historical novels I’ve ever read … sheer brilliance.”– Macsbooks
A fate foretold is only the beginning …
England, 1606. Young witch Sarah Stone works as a seamstress for Shakespeare’s company of players, and her life revolves around the theatre, her witchcraft, and her brother. But her world is shattered when she foretells the fortune of Shakespeare’s latest play.
After her vision, Sarah fears for her life. A dark shadow haunts the playhouse, and when her brother Tom seduces boy actor John Upton, John sees the hand of witchcraft in his own forbidden desires for men. Then Sarah weaves a spell to win another man’s love, and John begins to make his accusations against her.
As the first performance of Macbeth approaches, Sarah must find a way to convince John that his sins are his own – her life and the fortune of the play are at stake.
In a world of seductive illusion, can Sarah find a way to save herself?
A compelling and suspenseful tale of love, magic, and the power of fate. Contains adult themes.
Praise for Shakespeare’s Witch
“Un-put-down-able! Dark, complicated and intense. I loved it!” – Coffee & Ink Books
“Steeped in swirling, eerie darkness, there is romance, magic and sex, plus a touch of dark, grisly history … one of those unforgettable books which will stay with you long after turning the last page.” – Chicks, Rogues and Scandals
“Samantha Grosser expertly explores a plethora of oft-studied Shakespeare topics: incest, duty, power, witchcraft, love, God, etc. The story of the novel itself evokes the bard with echoes of his dialogue and plot motifs.” – Amy’s Booket
“I absolutely fell head-over-heels for this novel, would read it again in a friggin’ heartbeat and want everything she ever writes for the rest of my natural born life.” – Pursuing Stacie
“I am a huge fan of unique reads, so I definitely enjoyed Shakespeare’s Witch! Grosser’s writing talent is stellar and I stayed engrossed the entire time. Only when I reached the end did I realize I was holding my breath.” – Passages to the Past
“Be prepared to be at the edge of your seat wondering what might happen next–and even when you think you know for sure, you might not be so certain after all.”– Juliette Sebock
You can read my review of Shakespeare’s Witch here – Shakespeare’s Witch Review
The Witch’s Secret
Some Secrets Are Better Left Untold …
Six-fingered Mary Sparrow believes she was cursed at birth, and the bawdy house at the Cardinal’s Cap is the only home she’s ever known. Like most of the girls, she dreams of escape, but when an old man mysteriously drives her friend to madness, Mary begins to fear for her life.
Toby Chyrche also hopes for a better future, away from the confines of the tailor’s shop where it seems his fate is set in stone. So when a chance meeting with an old man at the brothel offers him a different path, he is only too eager to accept. Then the discovery of an old book of magic throws a new and shocking light onto the past – his mother had a brother, and that brother was a witch.
As the old man’s shadow over Bankside lengthens, Mary is drawn into the growing web of darkness. Unable to escape its reach, she turns to Toby for help. But Toby has daemons of his own to face. Will possession of the book be enough to protect them? And what price will they have to pay?
A dark tale of witchcraft, magic, and intrigue.
Previously published as The Sorcerer’s Whore.
The Witch’s Secret is the second in the Web of Witches series, but may be read as a stand alone novel.
Praise for The Witch’s Secret
“A spell-binding, chilling and evocative adventure, an enticing journey through time and fantasy that will have you begging for more.” Chicks, Rogues and Scandals
“Such an enticing read, you won’t be able to leave it be.” Jennifer C. Wilson
“A wickedly delightful, gripping and immersive tale that totally absorbed me into its hauntingly dark characters.” Gwendalyn Books
To read my review of; The Witch’s Secret (previously published as; The Sorcerer’s Whore) here – The Witch’s Secret Review
The Shadow Witch
The future lies in discovering the past …
Midwinter 1648. Young Kate Winter thinks she comes from a very ordinary family of tailors, but when a fortune teller reveals there is witchblood in her veins, she realises there is more to her parents than she knows.
Travelling to London on the promise of learning the truth, Kate soon suspects the fortune teller of keeping secrets of her own. Then she reaches out to connect with the spirits of those who have gone before, and her own latent powers begin to emerge. As the mysteries of her family history come slowly to light, she discovers the Winters are anything but ordinary.
Caught up in a battle that began in her grandfather’s time, Kate must harness her fledgling knowledge to defeat a powerful force. Will her connection to the past be enough to save her? Or will she die a witch’s death on the gallows?
A dark story of witchcraft, mystery, and secrets.
The Shadow Witch is to be released on 15th December and can be pre-ordered now.
Exclusive Excerpt of; The Shadow Witch
The faint light that reflected from the city through the two great windows gave the room an eerie glow and lit the shapes of the desk and cupboards, the bookshelves and fireplace. She had spent most of the day here with Isabella, starting to learn the secrets a man’s palm could reveal but now, in the dark, she was wary of the shadows that lurked at the edges of the room – something unknown, something evil.
Crossing to the desk, she held up the candle to see. Wax figures, smaller than a woman’s hand, half made. One with a belt around its waist that was woven from human hair. Kate let her fingers run across its surface, wondering what poor woman it might be and what ill wish was planned for it. Then she wondered if Isabella’s husband knew of all she did. In spite of her assurances to Nathan, surely he must – the attic was hardly a secret, and nothing was hidden away: all was out and on display.
Kate moved behind the desk to examine a shelf of jars of all shapes and sizes and colours, and the candle flame flickered in the glass. Running her fingers across the cold smooth surfaces with pleasure, she remembered her mother’s collection of herbs and tinctures that was kept in the cool of the pantry, and her own small knowledge of their contents. She should have paid more heed when Mary had tried to teach her what she knew.
Her hand stopped of its own accord at a jar of red glass no taller than her thumb that glimmered like wine in the candlelight. She brought the flame closer and peered at it, trying to make out the label. Henbane, she read, in tiny scrawled letters, barely legible. To ease pain, she recalled, and to cool inflammation. But she remembered too that their cook had objected to its presence in his kitchen. Witch’s ointment, he had called it, seed of the Devil. At the time she had laughed at his superstitious foolishness, but now she wrapped her fingers around it and without another thought she slid it from its place, taking a moment to adjust the jars around it to hide the gap it had left. Then, slipping the little vial inside her bodice, she walked to the window and gazed out at the sky above the rooftops, surprised again by such windows in so mean a house. Perhaps an artist had lived here once, she thought, who had needed the light to paint. Her eyes roamed the heavens though there was nothing to see beyond the dim reflected gloaming of the earthly realm below them.
Are you there, Hecate? Can you hear me?
Closing her eyes, she went inwards, seeking to renew the connection she had felt when she had known herself to be one with the earth and the sky, a power beyond her imagining. But all the certainties of that night had faded, and she was simply Kate the tailor’s daughter, friendless and a long way from home.
About the Author
Samantha Grosser is a very British author who doesn’t function without tea.
Having spent many years teaching English in Asia and Australia, she has now made her home on the sunny beaches of Sydney, Australia, where she lives with her husband, teenaged son, and a very small dog called Livvy.
She is the author of Another Time and Place, The Officer’s Affair, The King James Men, and the historical fantasy series Web of Witches.
When she isn’t writing or reading, (which isn’t often) you can find her either doing yoga, going for long walks, or watching old movies.