General, Mythology, Witches

Macbeth’s Spinners by Justine Johnson Hemmestad


Macbeth’s Spinners begins in 11th century Scotland with the supernatural transformation of the three Greek fates, but witchcraft only serves as a cover for their true mission. To thwart their ancient nemesis, the Greek god Apollo, they consolidate their power to help the warlord Macbeth, though Apollo is aware and tries to crush Macbeth in favor of the Northern invaders. But the purpose of the Fates and Macbeth are intertwined, and in the depths of secrecy and devotion the dominant Fate, Clotho, takes Macbeth into realms beyond himself to set him on his true path.

At its heart, Macbeth’s Spinners is a story about love that withstands place and time. Redemption seeps through the corners of the story and shows innermost vision to be a trustworthy guide. Haunting and sublime, the story follows the shift of mythic personalities at the most important points of their lives.

My Thoughts

This is definitely a niche book for those who enjoy highly unusual and imaginative re-tellings of well-known stories. Here, the story of Macbeth is merged with an unusual backstory for the three Fates involving Greek mythology and Apollo.

The writing is lush and evocative, full of beautiful words and language, which made me read passages aloud just to feel the words roll off my tongue. It is not, however, easy reading. This takes commitment and attention, but in the end is worth it.

This can’t be pigeonholed into any single genre because it is so original. That will likely limit its appeal to a small audience, who will likely read it again and again.

About the Author

Justine Johnston Hemmestad is an editor, the author of three novels, and is included in several anthologies, including Chicken Soup for the Soul: Recovering from Traumatic Brain Injuries. She is a graduate of The University of Iowa and has also graduated from the English Literature Master’s Degree program at Northern Arizona University. Learn more about her at

Antimony and Elder Lace Press is donating part of the profits of Macbeth’s Spinners to Laughing at my Nightmare, a charitable organization that helps people with disabilities make the world more accessible.