We're going to use Throwback Thursday to explore books that The LitChicks have read in the past. Some of these books will be listed on our "Past Reads" page and some may not. We've been around for 10 years with members coming in and out so sometimes it's hard to remember what we have and have not read. Since tomorrow is Halloween it feels fitting to feature a book that has to do with something spooky - in this case the witches of Salem, MA. "The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane" by Katherine Howe is one of our more recent reads - as in we read it at the beginning of 2014.
Most members liked the book, the couple of us who enjoy fantasy books enjoyed it a lot. We read this after reading a series of heavy books and I think it was just what we needed to lighten things up without being too fluffy (this is about as chick lit as we get as a group). This wasn't a scary/spooky book, but it was filled with moments of suspense. One of the things that the club liked most were the flashback scenes to the past, in fact many members would have liked more of those. Howe really created an interesting history of magic that felt very real and natural. I think one of her best choices was setting the book to take place during the summer, when ghosts and monsters are one of the last things on your mind. It would have been really easy to set it during the fall, when the weather in Massachusetts brings an other-worldliness to everything, especially in a town like Salem, but I think it would have made the story feel a bit cliched. The success of this book depends on the reader feeling like there is a balance between Connie's real-life problems and the mystery of Deliverance Dane's journal so when they do all merge it makes sense. If you are a person who enjoys tv shows/movies/books that mash realism with the supernatural and you like female heroes (like in Buffy the Vampire Slayer or the movie Practical Magic), you will probably enjoy this book a lot.
You can check out Howe's following books "The House of Velvet and Glass" and "Conversion" at Goodreads. You can also find her on twitter (@katherinebhowe).