Review of A Lullaby for Witches
Current day – Augusta is a 20-something museum studies graduate who lands her dream job as a museum collection manager in a the historical Harlowe home. Her relationship with her boyfriend is less than ideal, but Augusta is the type of woman who blames herself and doesn’t think she should expect better.
1876 – Margaret is the only girl in the wealthy Harlowe family. She doesn’t quite fit in, so she charts her own path, developing her own not-quite-natural abilities. But it is 1876. Woman are expected to live a certain way and deviation from that can lead to terrible consequences.
The lives of these two women, centuries apart, intersect when Augusta starts working in the house that Margaret once lived in. Ghost or witch – Margaret pulls Augusta into her past, because she wants something from Augusta. Augusta becomes interested in the life of one who’s story was lost because she was a woman.
The Kearsley-esque dual story line gives both the historical and present-day view of women. As their lives intertwine, history unfolds. Both Margaret and Augusta have man problems. The difference is Margaret and her lover are dead (or so it would seem) but the reader hopes that Augusta can still do better.
Augusta is young enough to lack a certain maturity I like in my heroines, but younger readers will appreciate her struggles. Even Margaret garners a little sympathy as a 19th century woman facing a rigid society. The museum setting was perfect for telling the story of two women who lived 150 years apart. This contemporary, historical, paranormal tale has a little bit of romance and a little bit of mystery. The verdict – A Lullaby for Witches is perfect for fans of Susanna Kearsley who are looking for a less complex story, but appreciate a well-crafted tale.
Through Netgalley, the publisher provided a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.
About A Lullaby for Witches by Hester Fox
Once there was a young woman from a well-to-do New England family who never quite fit with the drawing rooms and parlors of her kin.
Called instead to the tangled woods and wild cliffs surrounding her family’s estate, Margaret Harlowe grew both stranger and more beautiful as she cultivated her uncanny power. Soon, whispers of “witch” dogged her footsteps, and Margaret’s power began to wind itself with the tendrils of something darker.
One hundred and fifty years later, Augusta Podos takes a dream job at Harlowe House, the historic home of a wealthy New England family that has been turned into a small museum in Tynemouth, Massachusetts. When Augusta stumbles across an oblique reference to a daughter of the Harlowes who has nearly been expunged from the historical record, the mystery is too intriguing to ignore.
But as she digs deeper, something sinister unfurls from its sleep, a dark power that binds one woman to the other across lines of blood and time. If Augusta can’t resist its allure, everything she knows and loves—including her very life—could be lost forever.
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