Witch Hunts: A Graphic History of the Burning Times

Witch Hunts: A Graphic History of the Burning Times, co-written with Lisa Morton and illustrated by Greg Chapman, published by McFarland in June 2012. The book won the 2012 Bram Stoker Award for Superior Achievement in Graphic Novel.


For three centuries, as the Black Death rampaged through Europe and the Reformation tore the Church apart, tens of thousands were arrested as witches and subjected to torture and execution, including being burned alive. This graphic novel examines the background; the witch hunters’ methods; who profited; the brave few who protested; and how the Enlightenment gradually replaced fear and superstition with reason and science. Famed witch hunters Heinrich Kramer, architect of the infamous Malleus Maleficarum, and Matthew Hopkins, England’s notorious “Witchfinder General,” are covered as are the Salem Witch Trials and the last executions in Europe.

Creature Feature chose Witch Hunts as one of its Top Ten books of 2012.

For more information on the book and to view some of the illustrations, please visit Witch Hunts – the graphic novel.


This immensely detailed non-fiction graphic novel covers what we know as witches and witchcraft by historical fact told through informative and entertaining narration, character-true dialogue with beautifully dark illustrations. Beginning well beyond our common understanding, when it was against Catholic belief of witchcraft to their persecution and the infamous Salem trials, to near-present day; Wood, Morton and Chapman bring enlightened insight to periods, circumstances and individual lives that are largely unknown and overlooked by textbooks and references. From acts of deceit prompted by envy and greed, those unjustified and unwarranted which sent women and men alike to their deaths are highlighted and explained beyond footnotes, as they have largely been treated, and done so in a unique and original way that keeps the energy of the book flowing to the very last panel and page. Witch Hunts is a sociological look at tragic and deplorable events at the hands of misled peoples and evil figures, such as Heinrich Kramer, author of the Malleus Maleficarum. What is special to this graphic novel is the authors’ vast, in-depth personal knowledge of their topic and subject(s). Provided in a clear and compelling voice, with stunning illustrations to help involve the reader Witch Hunts: A Graphic History of the Burning Times is an engrossing, compelling book. – Dustin LaValley, Shock Horror Magazine

The extensive research, passion, and knowledge on the subject-matter clearly shows throughout the book and graphics. Had history classes been taught in such a fashion, I might have been inclined to pay more attention. Shannon Gambino, Hodge Podge Galore Reviews

Wood and Morton did a lot of research for Witch Hunts and it shows.  The novel is succinct yet informative and the accompanying artwork brings the history to life. – Colleen Wanglund, The Horror Fiction Review

An outstanding overview of a vast subject in a concise and easy to read volume, Witch Hunts has resonance for all people living today. – Talie Helene, editor of The Year’s Best Australian Fantasy & Horror anthology series

…a short snappy narrative that doesn’t belabour points, hit’s the tour highlights, and keeps driving through the pages in order to fully cover the subject matter. There are simply no wasted words, an incredible amount of detail, and enough coverage of each major event to have the reader at least up to speed with the subject matter…Chapman has a fine eye for period detail, styles, and clothes, and nails the expressions throughout of a multitude of characters…Recommendation, people, well worth adding to your collection of dark subject matter. – Scaryminds

The biggest attribute of Witch Hunts probably comes in the form of its education. Even if you have an intimate knowledge of the burning times and in particular events like the Salem Witch Trials, there is bound to be a nugget of information within these pages that will come as a surprise. Moreover, the book is philosophical at heart, and you will be asking yourself the pertinent questions. Matthew Tait, Hellnotes

Do yourself a favor and pick up this absolutely stunning non-fiction graphic novel, it is eye opening and meticulously presented. It will linger with you long after you put it down and I give it my highest recommendation. Peter Schwotzer, Famous Monsters of Filmland

Enlightening, entertaining, and marvelously illustrated, Witch Hunts is a splendid and comprehensive guide to the Burning Times. – The Tomb of Dark Delights

Don’t mistake this as just another history book on the Salem Witch Trials. The graphic novel digs deeper into the issues with graphics and dialogue that bring the witch-hunts to life – Digital Journal


Links to Purchase:


Barnes and Noble

Book Depository

McFarland and Co. Inc.