We are delighted to be able to reveal the cover for V. V. James’ upcoming novel Sanctuary, a modern day thriller that looks into the world of witchcraft, as well as an exclusive piece written by the author herself, below.
Sanctuary will be published on 8 August by Orion Books, and is available to pre-order now.
A piece by V. V. James:
Imagine a world in which your backache could be cured by the doctor, the physio … or the witch. In which your marriage crisis might be helped by the relationship counsellor, the divorce lawyer … or the witch. Imagine a country where your dislike of a new president could take the form of marching, or tweeting … or casting a spell.
Actually, that last one is true. I covered Trump’s first 100 days in the White House in my day job as a TV documentary director. I remember how protest marches brought millions of women onto the streets of America and cities round the world. But one thing my cameras didn’t catch was the moment singer Lana Del Rey galvanised fans to hex the new president.
It’s not surprising that angry and disappointed women turned to witchcraft. Magic has long been a tool for women’s expression — and oppression. I did my PhD on early 17th century British history, when witchcraft executions were at their peak as noble men curried favour with demonology-obsessed King James I by scapegoating poor and illiterate women. And yet the sort of knowledge that often landed these women in the dock — herbal medicine, midwifery — were skills women could master at a time when education was all but denied them. Witchcraft was mundane, and yet also perceived as terrifyingly powerful (although curiously, never powerful enough to save its practitioners from the noose).
All those ideas collided to create SANCTUARY. It’s a thriller set in a modern-day US that looks and works just like our world, except that magic is real. It’s mundane. And also, as Sanctuary’s residents discover, terrifyingly powerful.
The small Connecticut town of Sanctuary tears itself apart after a high-school football star dies and his girlfriend — the daughter of the local witch — is accused of murdering him. It’s about complex female friendships and the love and lies they’re woven from. About the things that men do to women – and women do to men. It’s about how we fear what we don’t understand… and what happens when those assumed to be powerless decide it’s time to raise their voice.
It falls to one fish-out-of-water cop to unravel who’s lying. And to prevent an investigation — and a town — from spiralling out of control.
Find Vic on Twitter at @drvictoriajames
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Preorder SANCTUARY at http://bit.ly/VVJamesSanctuary