The Witch's Boy

The Witch's Boy

eBook - 2014
Average Rating:
Rate this:
'A lightning bolt erupted from the cloud and aimed directly at Ned's heart. He couldn't cry out. He couldn't even move. He could just feel the magic sink into his skin and spread itself over every inch of him, bubbling and slithering and cutting deep, until he didn't know where the magic stopped and he began.'When Ned and his identical twin brother tumble from their raft into a raging, bewitched river, only Ned survives. Villagers are convinced the wrong boy lived. Sure enough, Ned grows up weak and slow, and stays as much as possible within the safe boundaries of his family's cottage and yard. But when a Bandit King comes to steal the magic that Ned's mother, a witch, is meant to protect, it's Ned who safeguards the magic and summons the strength to protect his family and community.In the meantime, in another kingdom across the forest that borders Ned's village lives Aine, the resourceful and pragmatic daughter of the Bandit King. She is haunted by her mother's last words to her: 'The wrong boy will save your life and you will save his.' But when Aine and Ned's paths cross, can they trust each other long enough to make their way through the treacherous woods and stop the war about to boil over'With a deft hand, acclaimed author Kelly Barnhill takes classic fairy tale elements--speaking stones, a friendly wolf, and a spoiled young king--and weaves them into a richly detailed narrative that explores good and evil, love and hate, magic, and the power of friendship.
Publisher: Chapel Hill, N.C. : Algonquin Young Readers, 2014.
ISBN: 9781616204334
Characteristics: 1 online resource.


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment

Jul 26, 2017

My detailed review is on my blog at

This was such a great book and I will have to look into others written by this author. It is very dark because it focuses a lot on death and people dying, but that isn’t necessarily a bad thing and is something that older children need to learn about. If not comfortable letting your child read this, it may be a good one to read together and discuss. I think this book is most appropriate for children who are probably 10 and older. It is a terrific story that I wouldn’t mind reading again!

JCLCourtneyS Feb 14, 2017

I read this because I had previously picked up The Girl Who Drank the Moon and loved it. The Witch's boy has the same storytelling greatness in it, and the characters are similarly well-drawn, but I liked The Girl Who Drank the Moon better. I wonder, though, if that would've been the case if I had read them in the opposite order.

Oct 11, 2016

I loved this story. Compelling characters who are well above the ordinary, with danger, adventure and the need for courage on almost every page. Also, it is very well written. The prose is lyrical and flows effortless through the story. I give this one two thumbs up - twice.

Jul 11, 2015

One of the best books I have ever read. Kelly Barnhill shows that magic is something not to be messed with, in a thrilling tale.

Nov 04, 2014

I was equal parts heartbroken and hopeful while reading this book. It is a beautiful tale of loss, obsession and redemption. I would recommend it for readers who understand and appreciate that fairy tales are dark and tragic with only touches of sweetness. Mature, intelligent and with protagonists that are impossible not to fall in love with.

Age Suitability

Add Age Suitability

There are no age suitabilities for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number


Subject Headings


Find it at CPL

To Top