Books

Top 5 books on Scotland's witches and myths, chosen by Helen Fields

Crime, thriller and historical fiction author Helen Fields selects five books about wiccans and folklore north of the border.

Witches and spell book

Image: Sierra Koder on Unsplash

Ahead of the release of her new book The Last Girl to Die, author Helen Fields chooses her top books about Scotland’s witches.

1. Outlander by Diana Gabaldon

It’s impossible to have missed the Outlander TV series, but the books still make great reading. Impeccably researched and based around the idea of Scotland’s magical stone circles – swooning included for free.

2. Scottish Witchcraft: A Complete Guide to Authentic Folklore, Spells and Magickal Tools by Barbara Meiklejohn-Free

Written by a witch for other would-be witches, part autobiography, part instruction manual. Want to sharpen up those Wicca skills? Then this is the book for you. 

3. The Children’s Vampire Hunting Brigade by David Blake Lucarelli 

A graphic novel based on the eerie tale of a huge band of children found in a Glasgow graveyard in 1954, armed and hunting a vampire with iron teeth said to have killed two boys. Truth really is stranger than fiction.

The Last Girl to Die
The Last Girl to Die by Helen Fields is out on September 1 (Avon, £7.99)

4. Macbeth by Shakespeare

The original and best. Scotland has witch tales aplenty, but Shakespeare brought us the weird sisters who prophesy the destiny of Macbeth, and who turn an otherwise predictable tale of vengeance into something altogether more unsettling.

5. Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone by JK Rowling

Love her or loathe her, Rowling opened the gates of her vast imagination when she sat in that Edinburgh cafe, but the magic isn’t all conjured from her mind. Many of the beings she writes about are borne of legend, and recreated from Scotland’s mythical past.

You can buy The Last Girl to Die from The Big Issue shop on Bookshop.org, which helps to support The Big Issue and independent bookshops.

This article is taken from The Big Issue magazine. If you cannot reach your local vendor, you can still click HERE to subscribe to The Big Issue today or give a gift subscription to a friend or family member.You can also purchase one-off issues from The Big Issue Shop or The Big Issue app, available now from the App Store or Google Play.

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