The Witch Hunters

A Satire

THE WITCH HUNTERS is a tale of gut-churning hypocrisy in the style of Evelyn Waugh’s early satires.

Reclusive dress designer, Paul Zomers, arranges a welcome to new neighbours Persefony and Haydies Sticks.  After more drinks than is wise, Paul blurts out that he knows Father Robert Pleasance who is front page nationally for the abuse of a minor.

Friend Brad and the new neighbours will not let the mention pass. As Paul’s story advances so do the drinks until Paul makes a confession that unleashes an uncontrollable chain of events drawing him into a vortex of hyperactive media people and public liability lawyers targeting Archbishop Richard Ryan for his callous treatment of sexual abuse victims and his cynical efforts to protect his Church.

While Paul wrestles with events that bring him to the attention of the national media, he is caught in an unnerving romantic relationship with Persefony and her New Age life-style. Others watch this development with dismay. Paul’s crisis of identity comes to a head when top radio host Norman Mudlord releases explosive information about the Archbishop and his private secretary Father Steve Champion who has befriended Paul. Paul, Archbishop Ryan and Father Champion are under siege but for different reasons.

THE WITCH HUNTERS is a thoroughly revised (in many places rewritten), reorganized, expanded version of Seeking the Divine Spark self-published in 2010.  I have added chapter and a half and changed the title to reflect the story’s renewed themes. Ideologically driven changes in society and my anticipation of real events in parts of the first version prompted the extensive revision. The location of the story is indeterminate. It could just as well be in England, as in the US and Australia. Indeed, there is evidence for more interest in the US market than elsewhere. A second satire dealing with follow-up events is envisaged.

Amazon 5 ***** Star REVIEW of first version
‘Could not put it down’. We often hear people say that about a book. Wilson’s book really is a book I could not put down, in fact I stayed up well into the next morning reading it. This is great satire. The names Wilson gives people says a lot about them and their professions and/or way of life. Built around the hysterical need to crush the Catholic Church in a blanket condemnation of everything Catholic, I mean everything Catholic, the big bug-a-boo is a perverted priest who has molested minor boys. Criminal and morally repugnant as such actions are, the author has his characters being seen as hypocrites of the first order in their own morally bankrupt lives. The ending seemed a bit abrupt but the tension the book had generated made it a rather welcome release to have it finally come to an end that was not too unrealistic but which continued the satire to its logical conclusion. A marvelous work of literature of the satire sort.
The ending in no longer abrupt]

See comments and reviews of the first version

Writer … and still in the fifties