Review: Yvette Fielding's 'The Ghost Hunter Chronicles: The Witches Of Pendle'
Yvette Fielding, the television ghost hunter and author, is back with the third instalment in her children's series, 'The Ghost Hunter Chronicles'. Officially released today, the book is titled 'The Witches Of Pendle', and it's already available on Amazon.
Set against the backdrop of the very real historic witch trials of Pendle in 1612 - one of the most infamous witch hunts in English history - the book follows ghost-hunting best friends Eve, Clovis, and Tom. Accompanying them on this adventure as always is their mentor, Professor Rufus, and their trusty bulldog, Boris.
Drawing upon Yvette's extensive knowledge of real-life paranormal phenomena, the book delves into topics such as time slips, stone tape theory, possession and of course witchcraft. Real-life haunted locations, like The Bow Bells in East London and Lancaster Castle - where the Pendle witches were historically put on trial - are also woven into the narrative, adding another layer of depth to the story.
The book kicks off with a family moving into Malkin Cottage in Pendle, a name that carries ominous weight. Malkin Tower was the place where the accused witches lived and convened during the infamous witch trials. Young Jamie, part of the new family, discovers a sealed glass container while playing in the garden. Known as a witch bottle, these were traditionally filled with various objects and liquids and used to protect against curses and malevolent spirits. When Jamie opens the bottle, he inadvertently releases the spirits of these long-accused witches.
The reanimated witches are hell-bent on revenge, specifically targeting the descendants of those who were responsible for their trials and ultimately their deaths. They inflict upon them the chilling sensation of being strangled by unseen hands. This is a direct nod to Yvette's own experience during a 2004 episode of 'Most Haunted'. During that broadcast, the team investigated an old farmhouse in Pendle, and many of them reported a feeling of being choked, which had forced them to abandon the investigation.
But unlike Yvette and her team, who had to retreat, the victims of the witches' wrath in 'The Witches Of Pendle' have Eve, Clovis, and Tom to help them, armed with their usual EVP watches and some nifty new tools from Professor Rufus. One such invention is "paralinks," devices that facilitate effortless communication during their missions. Another noteworthy piece of kit is the Crookes Camera, named after 19th-century psychical researcher William Crookes, providing a fantastical touch to the very real world of ghost hunting.
The stakes are higher in this book, making it far more complex and engaging than its predecessors. You'll find yourself compulsively turning the pages, wanting to know what the vengeful spirits of the Pendle witches want and how the ghost-hunting trio will save the troubled descendants.
Although aimed at young teens, this isn't a tale for the faint-hearted. The book doesn't shy away from darker themes like violent possession, brutal phantom attacks, and ghosts forced to relive their suicides for eternity. The tension reaches its peak in an epic supernatural showdown with the vengeful witches of Pendle, which pushes our young ghost hunters to their limits.
To celebrate the release of the book, Yvette recently lead the 'Most Haunted' team back to Pendle Hill, a fan-favourite location, to conduct another paranormal investigation. Although not quite as dramatic as their previous visit, the location didn't disappoint, delivering some of the eeriest sounds caught on camera in the show's history.
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