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Saturday, July 20, 2019

Her Kind by Niamh Boyce: The Spirit of Petronelle Soars

Her Kind is the second novel by writer Niamh Boyce. Her debut, The Herbalist, was published in 2013. I finished Her Kind this morning after two days reading. I knew nothing about the Kilkenny witch trial on which the book is based and I tumbled into a medieval Ireland, unsure what to expect as I stumbled through the first few chapters blindly. The year is 1324. The pace of the novel is fast and I became comfortable in the story mid way through. From then onward the novel soars to its conclusion. I was gripped.

I loved the bravery and conviction of Boyce in telling this story. She is a gifted storyteller. It is clearly a very well researched book. Boyce also excels in passages of poetic description. I won't give much of the plot away except to say that it is the tale of a wealthy moneylender, Alice Kytler and her maid Petronelle de Midia. Though the events took place so long ago they remain pertinent and the drama played out is exploratory and relevant to our times. This is an Irish book and a world I felt at home in.

Her Kind can be purchased nationwide, (I got my copy in Easons) and here.

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