The Witch in the Well

The Witch in the Well

The Witch in the Well 

The Witch in the Well is the latest novel to be checked off my constantly growing to be read list. The title of this novel from author Camilla Bruce is what caught my attention. 

For whatever reason, I can just imagine a character similar to the Wicked Witch of the West being stuck in a well and screeching out, “help me!”, a bunch while people stand around pointing and laughing at her. 

Obviously that isn’t even close to what this novel is about, but that was the image that the title conjured up for me for whatever reason, and it caught my attention. With fall here, I thought this was the perfect read for me, while curled up under a blanket and a hot bowl of soup

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Have you read The Witch in the Well yet? Come on in and let me tell you about it! 

About The Witch in the Well 

The Witch in the Well is a dark Norwegian thriller from Camilla Bruce, author of You Let Me In.

When two former friends reunite after decades apart, their grudges, flawed ambitions, and shared obsession swirl into an all-too-real echo of a terrible town legend. 

Centuries ago, beautiful young Ilsbeth Clark was accused of witchcraft after several children disappeared. Her acquittal did nothing to stop her fellow townsfolk from drowning her in the well where the missing children were last seen.

When author and social media influencer Elena returns to the summer paradise of her youth to get her family’s manor house ready to sell, the last thing she expected was connecting with―and feeling inspired to write about―Ilsbeth’s infamous spirit. The very historical figure that her ex-childhood friend, Cathy, has been diligently researching and writing about for years.

What begins as a fiercely competitive sense of ownership over Ilsbeth and her story soon turns both women’s worlds into something more haunted and dangerous than they could ever imagine. 

Thoughts on The Witch in the Well 

“Remember that everything that happens happens for a reason, and that the milk in your fridge can be a manifestation of a number of things happening inside you, like old feelings or thoughts that ought to be discarded, an old friendship souring perhaps? The yeast infection might be nothing but bad or repressed memories of an old lover boiling over, and the forgotten bills only means you’re not taking care of yourself enough – have you tried a facial mask with charcoal?” 

Camilla Bruce, The Witch in the Well

One of the things that irritated me about this book is that the town it is set in doesn’t have a name. It is called “F—” and in the very beginning, there is a police report that states “F— police won’t confirm or deny…” Is that some funny subliminal way of trying to say fuck the police? If so, I’m not impressed, and if not, well, it wasn’t thought out well at all. I don’t have high hopes for this book, but I’m hoping it turns around. 

I struggled through reading this novel because it was desperately lacking a focus, and I found it difficult to follow along with so much of the time. I was also annoyed by the use of hashtags and copious swearing within the book. 

I call swearing “sentence enhancers” and if it doesn’t enhance the story or drive a point home, it isn’t being used properly, in my opinion. They were not used correctly in this story, it was just random and excessive. 

The Witch in the Well wasn’t my cup of tea in terms of books. I tried, and it just didn’t fit into the category of being an enjoyable read for me. I’m disappointed, but it just means the next book I pick will be better. 

Final Thoughts on The Witch in the Well 

The Witch in the Well was not a book I enjoyed, unfortunately. It just wasn’t my thing, and that is always disappointing to me when I have high hopes for a book and it just doesn’t meet my expectations. 

When I was finished reading The Witch in the Well, I went to look at reviews and see if anyone else felt the same way I did about it. I will say that based on everything I read, I am the odd duck in the group for not enjoying it. There were plenty of glowing reviews and people seemed to really enjoy it. 

As with every book I review, I always encourage you to read it yourself and form your own opinions. My job isn’t to bash or promote books. It is to shine a light on them so you can decide to read it or not and draw your own conclusions. I’ve found talking about books, even if I don’t like them, brings attention to them and sparks curiosity within readers and it inspires them to read it, and many end up loving a book. 

That is my favorite part of doing reviews. I want to shine a light on every novel I read and spark someone’s interest enough to go check out a book they haven’t heard of before. 


Have you read The Witch in the Well or any other writing from author Camilla Bruce? Are you a fan? Let me know your thoughts in the comments! 

About the Author 

The Witch in the Well
The Witch in the Well author Camilla Bruce

Camilla Bruce was born in central Norway and grew up in an old forest, next to an Iron Age burial mound. She has a master’s degree in comparative literature, and has co-run a small press that published dark fairy tales. Camilla currently lives in Trondheim with her son and cat. 

The Witch in the Well
The Witch in the Well author Camilla Bruce

Purchasing The Witch in the Well 

If you are interested in buying the hardcover version of The Witch in the Well, click here.

Click here for the Kindle version.

Click here for my favorite Kindle I currently own.

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The Reading Wife is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to, at no added cost to you.

The Witch in the Well
The Witch in the Well


  • Misty

    I did not care for the Witch in the Well either, but absolutely adored You Let Me In which out of likely thousands of books I have read remains in my top 5 books ever! It is the very rare books I have read multiple times.
    Highly disappointed that The Witch in the Well did not live up to my expectations! I thought it was lacking focus and stayed somewhat confused the entire time.

    • The Reading Wife

      I’ll have to add You Let Me In to my reading list, Misty! I’m like you, always highly disappointed when a book doesn’t quite live up to my expectations. Thanks for the recommendation!

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