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  • Published: 21 July 2020
  • ISBN: 9781787632530
  • Imprint: Bantam Press
  • Format: Trade Paperback
  • Pages: 368
  • RRP: $32.99

The Year of the Witching

In a rigid, repressive society where religious oppression and the suppression of individuality are the norm, a young woman discovers dark powers within herself with terrifying and far-reaching consequences - a stunning, powerful, coruscating alternate world feminist fantasy from acclaimed newcomer Alexis Henderson.

The Handmaid's Tale for a new generation . . .

In the lands of Bethel, where the Prophet's word is law, Immanuelle Moore's very existence is blasphemy.

The daughter of a union with an outsider that cast her once-proud family into disgrace, Immanuelle does her best to worship the Father, follow Holy Protocol and lead a life of submission, devotion and absolute conformity, like all the women in the settlement.

But a chance mishap lures her into the forbidden Darkwood that surrounds Bethel - a place where the first prophet once pursued and killed four powerful witches. Their spirits are still walking there, and they bestow a gift on Immanuelle: the diary of her dead mother, who Immanuelle is shocked to learn once sought sanctuary in the wood.

Fascinated by 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 realises the true threat to Bethel is its own darkness. And if Bethel is to change, it must begin with her . . .

  • Published: 21 July 2020
  • ISBN: 9781787632530
  • Imprint: Bantam Press
  • Format: Trade Paperback
  • Pages: 368
  • RRP: $32.99

About the author

Alexis Henderson

Alexis Henderson is a speculative fiction writer with a penchant for dark fantasy, witchcraft, and cosmic horror. She grew up in one of America’s most haunted cities, Savannah, Georgia, which instilled in her a life-long love of ghost stories. When she doesn’t have her nose buried in a book, you can find her painting or watching horror movies with her feline familiar. Currently, Alexis resides in the sun-soaked marshland of Charleston, South Carolina.

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Praise for The Year of the Witching

A thrillingly brisk and bracing tale of magic and power, I loved this book. It takes the best tropes of horror and witchcraft and gives them a refreshingly feminist twist.

S.A. CHAKRABORTY, author of The City of Brass

A dark, dramatic tale of oppression and rebellion, ideology and morality, with a complicated, appealing protagonist caught in a Handmaid's Tale nightmare . . . a fine addition to the body of feminist fantasy works, a great read.

LOUISA MORGAN, author of The Age of Witches

Bewitching . . . Henderson offers a powerful portrait of patriarchal, racial, and religious abuses . . . conjuring a sense of creeping dread and maintaining the pacing throughout. This riveting work announces Henderson as an exciting new voice in dark fantasy.


Slow burn horror crossed with a powerfully feminist coming-of-age novel . . . this book will haunt your dreams.

CHRISTINA HENRY, author of The Lost Boy

Beautifully sinister and beguiling, The Year of the Witching is blood-drenched, horrific and enchanting from start to finish.

TASHA SURI, author of Empire of Sand

Bone-chilling and breathtakingly beautiful . . . The Year of the Witching is storytelling at its finest.

RENA BARRON, author of Kingdom of Souls

A masterfully eerie, feminist story that binds itself to the reader's mind and won't let go. Alexis Henderson is an author to watch.

SHEA ERNSHAW, author of Winterwood

Gothic, dark and utterly enthralling, this is a world I wanted to sink into and never leave. I adored this book.

EMILY A. DUNCAN, author of Wicked Saints

The Year of the Witching tells a universal, timeless story about women's power.


The perfect dark, witchy escape to make you feel a little better about the world we live in now.


Alexis Henderson is giving us dark magic, Black witches, creepy woods and small religious towns, historical realness, and I'm here for it.


This is an intensely dark read and one of the most original books I've read in a long time.


Henderson blends the supernatural with the real, expertly and ingeniously using dark witchcraft, sigils, and magical plagues to weave in real world themes and issues like racism, the oppression and silencing of women, and religious abuse.


The Year of the Witching blew me away. It's a masterpiece.


'A magnificent, raw slice of folk horror, dark with threat and clenched with suspense . . . a brilliant debut to chill the brightest summer day.


This is one of the best, righteously angriest books I've read this year, and I cannot recommend it enough.


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