By: Jennifer McMahon
Publishing Date: 4/30/19 by Doubleday Books
ISBN: 9780385541381 (Hardcover)
368 pages (Kindle Edition)
Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️💫 (3.5)
I was able to receive this on Netgalley for an honest review. Thank you Doubleday Books!
Helen and Nate, totally uproot their lives, moving to forty acres of Vermont land. Helen, being the history teacher that she is, wants to build their dream home with pieces that hold a piece of the past. In doing so, she conjures up a part of the land that she never expected, three generations of Breckenridge women.
Skip back to Hattie Breckenridge, the lady that was lynched a century before on that same piece of land. There is still something that she wants Helen to find while she’s living there.
Enter, Olive. Olive, a high school student, lives with her father, and hopes for her mother to come back. She also knows, and searches for the very thing Hattie desires. This is where all three lives collide in a chilling search for the truth.
That synopsis had me jumping in excitement. It’s not something I ever read about. I loved the story, and that was what kept me intrigued. The writing, however, was not my favorite. I felt that it was repetitive, and almost too simplistic at points. I was expecting more of an atmospheric read rather than the heavy focus on the characters.
Since it is more character driven, let’s talk about that. This novel is told in multiple perspectives, and that is my favorite way authors write mysteries. It helps build anticipation, and I think it helps answer more questions. You get both sides of one story. I will admit that the characters in this weren’t horrible, but I still felt like they needed more development. They were distinctive enough to understand who was who, but I did find myself getting a little mixed up at times. Nate was probably my least favorite of all the characters. He was annoying, and I honestly wanted him to die the whole time. Unfortunately, it wasn’t that kind of story.
I’m interested to know what McMahon’s previous novels are like. I own the Winter People, and would love to read it still. If any of you have read her previous pieces of work, please let me know what you thought!
I didn’t hate this, but it wasn’t my new favorite book. I’m going to go ahead and recommend it to anyone just looking for an easy read. I think it’s worth it.
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