I was given the chance to review The Hangman’s Daughter and the sequel, The Dark Monk by, Oliver Potzsch and translated by Lee Chadeayne. The Hangman’s Daughter is what I would classify as a historical mystery novel. It takes place in the era of the witch trials in
Bavaria. Jakob Kuisl is the town’s hangman. Although he is highly needed for his work in
the town, he is not well respected as a citizen of Schongau because everyone
thinks that it is a curse to acknowledge him or his family. He is not even allowed to live inside the
city walls and hangmen’s children are not allowed to marry in the town. Jakob on the side is also asked for his
knowledge with healing remedies and is often sought out to help cure ailments. Because of this the physician’s son Simon Fronwieser
is enamored by the books and knowledge that Jakob has acquired and frequents his
house to look through the books and gain more knowledge; and it doesn’t hurt that
Magdalena, the hangman’s daughter is there also. Simon’s father is the town’s physician and he
himself has gone to the university to study as well. He isn’t fond of his father’s old tactics of
healing with bleeding patients and likes that Jakob’s knowledge of the human
body goes deeper then the common practices.
After several children are found missing or dead the town quickly comes
to the conclusion that a witch is among them and is even quicker to point a
finger at the individual they think did it.
After the “witch” is locked up Jakob and Simon seek to find the true culprit
of the crime.
This is a book that I didn’t want to put down. It was beautifully written and translated into English. I love historical fiction and this book added just a bit more and kept you guessing the whole time as to who had done it. It was full of action, mystery, and history and I absolutely LOVED it. I would highly recommend this to anyone who loves mystery, history, or both.
Thank you to BzzAgent for allowing me to review these books for free in exchange for an honest review.