One of my favorite things to teach was Arthur Miller's play The Crucible. I have read a number of both fiction and nonfiction books on the Salem Witch Trials. The Unraveling of Mercy Louis by Keija Parssinen was inspired by this 1692 event in American history, but with a twist. This novel of psychological suspense is set in the present in Port Sabine, a small oil refining town in southeastern Texas.
The story begins with the fatal discovery of a dead baby near the high school, which ignites a witch-hunt that unearthing communal and family secrets that threaten the lives of the town’s girls. Every girl in town becomes a suspect.
Mercy, the star of her high school basketball team, is being raised by her grandmother, Evelia, a strict evangelical who has visions of an imminent Rapture and sees herself as the keeper of Mercy’s virtue. When Mercy collapses on the opening night of the season, Evelia prophesies that she is only the first to fall, and soon, other girls are afflicted by the mysterious condition, sending the town into a tailspin.
You might also enjoy these books from the TA library about the Salem Witch Trials:
- The Sacrifice - Kathleen Benner Duble
- Wicked Girls: A Novel of the Salem Witch Trials – Stephanie Hemphill
- Time of the Witches – Anna Myers
- Witches’ Children: A Story of Salem – Patricia Clapp
- Beyond the Burning Time – Kathryn Lasky
- A Break with Charity: A Story About the Salem Witch Trials (Great Episodes series) – Ann Rinaldi
- The Crucible - Arthur Miller