The Hangman’s Daughter by Oliver Potzsch, trans. Lee Chadeayne
In the 16th century Bavarian town of Schongau, children are being murdered. The strange mark on their shoulders– the mirror of Venus– points to witchcraft, but could there be a less supernatural source? Jakob Kuisl, the town’s hangman, is convinced of the accused’s innocence, and. together with the town’s physician, he attempts to discover the truth behind the killings. Along the way, the reader is treated to a tale of suspense, romance, and history. This book is steeped in violence while commenting on its senselessness. A compelling story, well-rounded characters, and an interesting setting make this book worth reading. Check it out if you have a long plane ride or an empty winter’s night.