The Betrayal of Maggie Blair

Book Report By: Hanna Wagner


Title: The Betrayal of Maggie Blair

Date: April 18th, 2011

Summary: In seventeenth-century Scotland, sixteen-year-old Maggie Blair is sentenced to be hanged as a witch but escapes to the home of her uncle, placing him and his family in great danger as she risks her life to save them all from the King's men.


  • Author

    • The Children's Book Award

    • Carnegie Medal

    • Hampshire Book Award

    • Many Other Awards (etc.)


  • The Accused of Witchcraft vs. The Public

    • The conflict consists of the public labeling innocent people,like Maggie, as witches and the accused fighting back and refusing to take that label.

Quote 1:

  • “But today as I looked up at the mountains from the dead whale in front of me, the island seemed to shift, and for a moment I thought it was moving toward me, creeping across the water. It was coming for me, wanting to swallow me up”

  • Shows that your life circumstances can change your view on things and people you are used to seeing everyday and turn them into something that they are not. Like Maggie's life was taking wrong turns and so instead of viewing the mountains as what they are, she thinks they are out to get her like everyone else.

Quote 2:

  • “The Lord has called us to stand firm for the difficult right against the easy wrong.”

  • This shows the entire motivation behind some of the accused fighting back to keep their innocence, it shows that they are strong enough to fight their labels and overcome this tragedy.

Quote 3:

  • “I’ll go where I choose, and I’ll be who I am, and I’ll rise up to meet whatever comes my way.”

  • This is where Maggie finally comes to the thought that no matter what she will be proud of who she is and that no history or event will change her mind.


  • Shows a young girl growing up

  • This book shows how Maggie, a young teen, becomes more and more independent and learns to love her own ways

  • Gives you a useful lesson on life
  • This book pushes the fact that all because everyone may think of you as a certain way does not mean you have to fit their standards, love your life and yourself.

  • Covers a historical events that are close to what really happened
  • The way this book told the fictional story of a person living through this time really gives the story and information that is real a personal feeling to it.


  • Protestants created their own church away from Catholics

    • People were growing into their own spirit of independence and wanted to become in power to be closer to God.

  • Witch trials

    • People were prosecuted as witches just because of the words that were mistaken just like Maggie and her Granny were.

  • King Charles resented the rebellious spirit of the protestants resulting in violence

    • The violence that came from the King turned everyone’s life upside down out of fear to state their own opinion.


This book is beautiful example of how a historical fiction novel can take history and make it personal and full of excitement. The Betrayal of Maggie Blair shows how the witch trials were more than the fear in the regular people, but also shows how innocent women and men were tried and often killed out of anger and superstition. This book also explains how a young girl surrounded with persecution was still able to overcome the labels placed on her and her family as well as become proud of who she is and her past. If you want the 16th century to come to life in your hands, The Betrayal of Maggie Blair is the book for you.