A Fraserburgh author will publish her latest book next month.
Ailish Sinclair’s new publication, The Mermaid and the Bear, to be published on October 18, highlights the hidden history of Aberdeen.
Everyone knows about the Salem witch trials that took place in seventeenth century America, but less well known are the instances of witch hunting that occurred across Scotland.
Ailish painstakingly researched this fascinating and terrible subject for more than a year, before blending it with a love story in her new novel.
Featuring three real women who were accused as part of the Aberdeen witchcraft panic of 1597, the book is set against the beautiful backdrop of the Aberdeenshire countryside and tells the story of Isobell, and her desperation to escape London and an arranged marriage, to find a better life.
Upon landing in Scotland, Isobell’s dreams of faery castles, ancient woodlands and misty lochs seem to be coming true, as she finds herself kitchen maid to a handsome Laird, who offers not only safety but also the hope for a brighter future, filled with love and kindness. All is not how it seems, however, and enemies, both from the past and the present, conspire to test Isobell to the limits of endurance, and beyond.
The Mermaid and the Bear is a story of triumph over evil, hope through adversity, faith in humankind and – above all – love.
“We are really honoured to represent Ailish and her books,” says Wendy Lawrance, co-founder of GWL Publishing.
“In The Mermaid and The Bear, she has created a truly wondrous, almost fairytale, setting. Her local knowledge has proved invaluable, and her research into the subject has been second-to- none.
“For us, one of the best elements of the novel has been the kinship she’s created between the three women suspected of witchcraft, being that of ‘mothers’ and ‘daughter’, which is heartfelt and poignant, bettered only by her two central characters, whose budding relationship and eventual coming together is both touching and beautiful.”
Ailish trained as a dancer and taught dance for many years before working in schools to help children with special needs. A short stint as a housekeeper in a castle fire her already keen interest in untold stories of the past and she sat down to research and write. She now lives beside a loch with her husband and children.