The Last Witch in Edinburgh (Paperback)

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For fans of Sarah Penner’s The Lost Apothecary and Alix E. Harrow’s The Once and Future Witches, this lush, atmospheric novel from the author of Where Ivy Dares to Grow blends witchcraft, queer love, a vibrant Edinburgh setting, and Scottish folklore for a propulsive and emotional story exploring what it means to resist the patriarchy and find your voice.

“A lyrical and hauntingly beautiful new voice.” —Hester Fox, Author of A Lullaby for Witches

In an alternate Edinburgh of 1824, every woman lives in fear that she will be the next one hanged for witchcraft. All it takes is invoking the anger, or the desire, of the wrong person. Nellie Duncan, beautiful and unwed, keeps to herself until she encounters the Rae Women’s Apothecary. There, fiery Jean Rae and the other women provide cures and teach others that they too can aid the winter deity, the Cailleach, embracing her characteristic independence, agency, and craft, in turn becoming witches themselves.

Nellie finds a place and a purpose at the shop, and a blossoming romance with Jean, as she learns about nature-based craft and a witch’s ability to return to life after death. But the Cailleach has an ancient enemy intent on stripping the power of the deity and all her witches, leaving a wake of patriarchal violence and destruction. When heart-breaking disaster strikes, Nellie flees and spends the next two centuries hiding from the world—until love gives her the courage and the motivation to come back.

Nellie’s past is waiting for her there, and hanging witches is no longer the only means of oppression. But this time, Nellie refuses to run—either from her foes, or from her resolve to awaken others to the unimaginable power that can come with fighting the patriarchy in its many forms—and finding one’s own magical inner-strength.

About the Author

Marielle Thompson is a writer and lover of all things gothic, haunting, and romantic. Her writing is inspired largely by her experiences with mental health, particularly living with a dissociative disorder, and her studies in literary history. She holds Masters degrees in Romantic & Victorian Literature and History and Creative Writing. Visit her online at

Praise For…

Praise for The Last Witch in Edinburgh

"This book is brilliant, important, and unforgettable to its final page!” —Constance Sayers, author of A Witch in Time

"Marielle Thompson effortlessly combines mystery, romance and the paranormal in this compelling and beautifully written book. The Last Witch in Edinburgh is at once timely and historical, suffused with a deep understanding of human nature in all its violence, contradictions and glories. Using her deep knowledge of Scottish history, Thompson creates a luminous, terrifying but ultimately redemptive tale, weaving a spell the reader will happily become caught up in."Carole Lawrence, author of Edinburgh Twilight

"The Last Witch in Edinburgh is a tale both dark and hopeful, grim but triumphant. Thompson paints her world with marvelous details of a great Scottish city as well as the mythic stories and powerful magic of Gaelic culture. Readers will love this fresh take on witchcraft, as I did." —Louisa Morgan, author of A Secret History of Witches and The Ghosts of Beatrice Bird

"Thompson has penned a prescient ode to women—their stories, their voices, their power—packaged in a beautiful tale of hope and resistance. Readers of magical and feminist historical fiction will find much to love in this powerful book." —Hester Fox, author of The Last Heir to Blackwood Library

"I adored this witchy, feminist, atmospheric story. Fans of The Once and Future Witches and The Lost Apothecary will devour this novel." —Kelsey James, author of The Woman in the Castello

"A book both timely and timeless. Read it for your daughters, your sisters, yourself.” —Paulette Kennedy, Bestselling Author of The Witch of Tin Mountain

Praise for Where Ivy Dares to Grow by Marielle Thompson

“Rich, immersive, and heartachingly romantic.” —B. R. Myers, Bestselling Author of A Dreadful Splendor
“Thompson combines a gothic novel, a time-travel romance, and a frank depiction of living with mental illness. Most compellingly, the protagonist’s mental state is central to the narrative without driving the plot.” Library Journal
“Thompson's writing style echoes a mind in the thrall of mental illness and allows readers to see events from Saoirse's perspective. Though Langdon's time-slips are the catalyst for Saoirse beginning to believe that she deserves unconditional love and isn't hopelessly flawed, Saoirse rescues herself from the doomed relationship she has found herself in. Where Ivy Dares to Grow, an immersive debut, does a great deal to counter the stigma of mental illness.” Shelf Awareness
“Marielle Thompson excels at crafting an atmospheric novel populated by villainous characters and creepy houses. The descriptions practically ooze with gothic flavor as Saoirse wanders around the seemingly possessed Langdon Hall on her own, caught in her own fractured thoughts. Thompson treats Saoirse’s mental illness with compassion and even provides a full explanation at the end of the novel. Readers who enjoy moody, gothic style novels or time slip plot lines, will find much to enjoy in Where Ivy Dares to Grow.” Historical Novel Society

“Your heart will be racing to find out what happens next.” BookBub

"Richly drawn and evocative, Where Ivy Dares to Grow is a sophisticated and masterful tale with the perfect gothic elements: an eerie manor house that lives and breathes with atmosphere, a heroine with a core of quiet, inner strength, and inventive and surprising twists. I couldn't put this one down. Marielle Thompson is a writer to watch!" —Paulette Kennedy, author of Parting the Veil

​"Marielle Thompson weaves a story that is at once a haunting gothic novel, a swoon-worthy romantic tale, and an unflinching look at what it can be to live with mental illness. This story of a woman discovering – and coming to accept – all facets of herself is rendered in beautiful, lyrical prose that will have you rereading sentences multiple times, the better to savor them." —Alyssa Palombo, author of The Spellbook of Katrina Van Tassel

"Langdon Hall is imposing, numbingly cold, and isolating. But places, like people, contain multitudes, and this old house still has a heart. In Where Ivy Dares to Grow, Marielle Thompson tells a story about love in its many forms—and the aches it sometimes brings. A Gothic daydream of a read!" —Briana Una McGuckin, author of On Good Authority

“The novel tugs at the heart, filled with yearning for a real love who sees you as you really are, and the journey to step from the shadows to the sun.” Kim Taylor Blakemore, author of The Deception

"With a house full of secrets, a compelling love story, and atmosphere aplenty, Where Ivy Dares to Grow delivers all the hallmarks of a classic Gothic novel told in a lyrical and hauntingly beautiful new voice." —Hester Fox, author of A Lullaby for Witches
Product Details
ISBN: 9781496742643
ISBN-10: 1496742648
Publisher: Kensington
Publication Date: August 20th, 2024
Pages: 384
Language: English