A few years after the Salem Witch Trials took place, a girl named Ann recollects what happened and her part in it. She had been young, and her parents and uncle had influenced her negatively, resulting in many of the hangings that took place. Currently, her mother and father are dead and she is the caretaker of her five siblings. Throughout the story the audience sees Ann’s memories, her interactions with her younger siblings, and other events she couldn’t have remembered but were still important to the dynamic of the story.
This is a very serious and atmospheric book. When I first saw it I thought I would have a hard time discerning the characters because of the art style, but it was actually easy because the dialogue was clear and there weren’t many characters to keep track of. Ann was a very good character, and in this short graphic novel I found myself loving her. She is exactly the kind of character I like, loyal but knows where her loyalties belong. The way that the images in the book are set up reminded me of an intense historical movie, and it was very engaging. There was never anything excessive here, everything seemed important and was in its appropriate place. The back and forth in the time periods during which the book takes place helped to further develop Ann as a character, showing us the details of what happened in her past and how people in her current time period react to it.
Another great aspect to this story was the relatability given to a historical event. Even though nobody reading the book has been through what Ann has been through, the writer still does a fantastic job making the audience feel for her plight and remember times in their own lives that were similar but far less dramatic and disastrous, such as submitting to peer pressure. All in all, what was accomplished in this short graphic novel was more memorable and well thought out than most people would expect, and I loved every page. Because of the intensity and serious tone, I would recommend this book to those in 7th grade or above, and to those who love historical fiction. Even if one does not like graphic novels, this is definitely one of the best I’ve ever read.