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Thursday, June 23, 2011

{Review}: The Betrayal of Maggie Blair by Elizabeth Laird

The Betrayal of Maggie Blair
Title: The Betrayal of Maggie Blair
Author: Elizabeth Laird
Genre: YA Historical Fiction
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Books for Children (April, 2011)
ISBN: 9780547341262
Source: NetGalley*
Available on: Amazon | Barnes&Noble | TheBookDepository

My Rating: 3/5

Description from GoodReads:
In seventeenth-century Scotland, saying the wrong thing can lead to banishment—or worse. Accused of being a witch, sixteen-year-old Maggie Blair is sentenced to be hanged. She escapes, but instead of finding shelter with her principled, patriotic uncle, she brings disaster to his door.

Betrayed by one of her own accusers, Maggie must try to save her uncle and his family from the king’s men, even if she has to risk her own life in the process.
My Review
From the description I was expecting Maggie to be a witch and this book to be a paranormal story. It was not. Do not read this book expecting Maggie to escape persecution by flying of in a broom stick.

The Betrayal of Maggie Blair is mostly a story about the struggle to practice one's religion. Maggie is accused of being a witch because of her grandmothers eccentricities and because others want their land. Then after her escape she goes to live with her uncle. A religious man that is fighting for his right to follow his beliefs. Trouble arrives in the form of people trying to get Maggie, her grandmother and her uncle's family to conform to what others believe to be the way to worship. What will one sacrifice for religion? One's life? How about the life of the one's we love?

Maggie was a very likable character. She was innocent and sweet. She loved her cold grandmother and just wanted to fit in. It is life and its unjust ways that make her strong and deteremined to fight for what she believes is right. It was great to see this growth in the character and experience along with her.

The pace is a bit slow because it doesn't build to a culminating part where everything is solved. It is more like different obstacles that Maggie has to overcome to shape who she becomes in the end.

I recommend it to those who like reading historical fiction. It takes place in 17th century Scotland.

*Disclosure: This e-ARC was provided by the publisher (Houghton Mifflin Books for Children via NetGalley) for free in exchange for an honest review.


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