The Year Of The Witching by Alexis Henderson | Audiobook Review

I received this book for free from Library, Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

The Year Of The Witching by Alexis Henderson | Audiobook ReviewThe Year of the Witching by Alexis Henderson
Series: Bethel #1
Narrator: Brianna Colette
Length: 11 Hours 37 Minutes
Published by Penguin on July 21, 2020
Genres: Fiction, Horror, Occult & Supernatural, Fantasy, Dark Fantasy
Pages: 368
Format: Audiobook, eARC
Source: Library, Publisher
Buy on Amazon
ISBN: 9780593099629
Goodreads
five-stars

A young woman living in a rigid, puritanical society discovers dark powers within herself in this stunning, feminist fantasy debut.   In the lands of Bethel, where the Prophet's word is law, Immanuelle Moore's very existence is blasphemy. Her mother’s union with an outsider of a different race cast her once-proud family into disgrace, so Immanuelle does her best to worship the Father, follow Holy Protocol, and lead a life of submission, devotion, and absolute conformity, like all the other women in the settlement.
But a mishap lures her into the forbidden Darkwood surrounding Bethel, where the first prophet once chased and killed four powerful witches. Their spirits are still lurking there, and they bestow a gift on Immanuelle: the journal of her dead mother, who Immanuelle is shocked to learn once sought sanctuary in the wood.
Fascinated by the secrets in the diary, Immanuelle finds herself struggling to understand how her mother could have consorted with the witches. But when she begins to learn grim truths about the Church and its history, she realizes the true threat to Bethel is its own darkness. And she starts to understand that if Bethel is to change, it must begin with her.

Why Did I Listen To The Year Of The Witching by Alexis Henderson?

The Year Of The Witching by Alexis Henderson has a delightfully gothic cover. I wanted to prioritize reading this adult fiction debut. Typically when I want to prioritize something and get to it sooner, rather than later, I listen to the audiobook version. When I saw this book pop up on Libby, I was so thrilled. Plus, at the time that I listened – mid August – it helped to pump me right up for the Autumn season which is one of my favorite seasons.

What’s The Story Here?

Alexis Henderson’s The Year Of The Witching is a sort of dystopian, historical fantasy about a young woman named Immanuelle Moore. Immanuelle’s birth was illegitimate, her mother having conceived her with a man who was an outsider of a different race. To overcome this, Immanuelle tries her best to be obedient to the Prophet and live a virtuous life. However, Immanuelle ends up in the Darkwood. Which is where four witches were killed and she is gifted the journal of her mother. As it turns out, her mother used to escape to the Darkwood as well. The diary reveals many truths to her, including that her mom 100% consorted with witches, but also her settlement, Bethel, is kind of shady. There’s definitely evil lurking within and Immanuelle must change to begin to change the Church and Bethel.

What Did I Think Of The Year Of The Witching?

The Year Of The Witching is a perfect read to get you into a fall/Halloween mode. Also, I just want to say that I love that this book stars a character of color. I feel like the spooky fall reads that I enjoy do not have enough Black characters as main characters and well, I am pretty sure that Black people enjoy fall too. Alexis Henderson’s book is atmospheric and it didn’t take me long to feel an immediate sense of place and time while reading. The pacing is pitch perfect. Different elements are revealed at poignant moments. This kept my attention completely while listening.


How’s The Narration?

The audiobook of The Year Of The Witching is narrated by Brianna Colette. Colette does a wonderful job conveying atmosphere, character, and urgency. The audiobook is 11 hours and 37 minutes. It is an excellent listen that I cannot recommend enough. I know that I will be back to listen to the next book from Henderson and absolutely recommend you get this book – but especially when you’re in a spooky mood.

five-stars
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April is in her 30s and created Good Books And Good Wine. She works for a non-profit. April always has a book on hand. In her free time she can be found binge watching The Office with her husband and toddler, spending way too much time on Pinterest or exploring her neighborhood.
About April (Books&Wine)

April is in her 30s and created Good Books And Good Wine. She works for a non-profit. April always has a book on hand. In her free time she can be found binge watching The Office with her husband and toddler, spending way too much time on Pinterest or exploring her neighborhood.

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