PAPERBACK

CATEGORY: Children

PAGES: 400

TRIM SIZE: 5.5 X 8.25

ISBN: 978-1-61620-548-5

LIST PRICE: $7.95

HARDCOVER

CATEGORY: Children

PAGES: 384

TRIM SIZE: 5.5 X 8.3 IN

ISBN: 978-1-61620-351-1

LIST PRICE: $16.95

E-book

CATEGORY: Children

PAGES: 368

ISBN: 978-1-61620-433-4

LIST PRICE: $7.95

AUDIO

CATEGORY: Children

ISBN: 978-1-62231-479-9

LIST PRICE: $23.58

Overview

“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 Áine, 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 Áine 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.

A 2015 ALSC Notable Children’s Book
A Washington Post Best Book of 2014
A Publishers Weekly Best Book of 2014
A Kirkus Reviews Best Children’s Book of 2014
A Chicago Public Library “Best of the Best” 2014

Praise

"A story with many alluring elements…Barnhill creates an absorbing world of kingdoms and prophecies in which transformation comes through language, and through courage and self-awareness as well…[The Witch’s Boy] should open young readers’ eyes to something that is all around them in the very world we live in: the magic of words."
- The New York Times

"With its family secrets, dark and enchanted forest and resourceful children, The Witch’s Boy echoes the spirit and tone of old Grimm’s fairy tales . . . This spellbinding fantasy begs for a cozy chair, a stash of Halloween candy and several hours of uninterrupted reading time."
- The Washington Post

"Barnhill skillfully interweaves the stories of Ned, Áine, Sister Witch and the stones, along with an intriguing group of secondary characters. The third-person narration switches perspective smoothly, and it’s all related in a precise, flowing prose that easily places readers into the fantastic setting and catches them up in the story. The classic fantasy elements are all there, richly reimagined, with a vivid setting, a page-turning adventure of a plot, and compelling, timeless themes."
- Kirkus Reviews, starred review

Related Websites

Meet the Author


Kelly Barnhill
writes novels for children and short stories for adults and poetry that she whispers in the dark when no one is listening. Her first novel, The Mostly True Story of Jack, received four-starred reviews, and her second, Iron Hearted Violet, received a Parents’ Choice Gold Award. Her most recent novel is The Witch's Boy.

Read an Excerpt