Title: The Stone Witch
Author: Isobelle Carmody
In: Under My Hat (Jonathan Strahan)
Rating Out of 5: 4 (Really good read!)
My Bookshelves: Australian authors, Easy reading, Fantasy, Witches
Format: Short story
Publisher: Hot Key Books
5th sentence, 74th page: We were, however, tilted heavily to one side.
A woman who doesn’t like kids sits on an aircraft, preparing to go on a journey. The flight attendant brings a child traveling alone to take the seat beside her. The woman is none too happy about this turn of events and studiously tries to ignore the little girl. For the most part it seems to be working until the plane hits some major turbulence. Just as it seems the plane is about to crash, the woman is transported into a world that she has dreamed about many times before. The little girl along with another older woman named Rose and her dog are there as well. Rose sends the woman and girl on a fantastical journey to find a stolen amethyst egg. Whether or not they succeed in their mission will ultimately determine their fate and may also teach them a few things about themselves in the process.
Planes, children and death, three things that kind of freak me out, all combined into one very enjoyable short story. But honestly, I didn’t expect anything less from one of my favourite authors!
There always seems to be an underlying story of fate and quests in Carmody’s work, and this story is no different. After Hester’s worst fears seem to be realised, she is sent on a quest with a small child to a potentially glorious future. Ultimately, she is forced to face a decision that makes her face up to her own future, or that of another human being’s.
The vividness of Carmody’s writing stays with me long after I have finished the final page of her stories. The Stone Witch is no different, and I can’t get those final moments of the story out of my mind.
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