The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane

The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane - Katherine Howe What I loved:

The setting- The author truly captured the spirit of how old New England traditions permeate present-day New England. She made me homesick in her descriptions of Marblehead, so much so that I could practically smell the ocean wafting over the sea wall.

Not so much:

The character development- Connie was not developed well, and at times bordered on annoying. She was supposed to be this incredibly intelligent post-grad Harvard student, yet she was quite slow in picking up on many of the elements of the mystery. I think this was the author's attempt to allow the reader to see things before the main character, but it didn't come off well and Connie just seemed goofy and I found it hard to make a connection with her.

What I loved:

The history- I've always been fascinated by the Salem Witch Trials and the mysteries surrounding it. I loved how the book went back and forth between the time periods. The 17th century scenes were vivid and rang true to me. I was especially intrigued by the linguistics research involving the various words she came across, not only in how their spellings were different, but the meanings as well.

Not so much:

A couple of things did not ring true- like no way would the state of Massachusetts allow 20 years of unpaid property tax go by. I kept wondering if this was the mother's way of getting Connie into the house, but it was never explained. And the creepy advisor guy? I'm still not sure about his motivation.

What I loved:

The plot- While there were many things I figured out before they happened (and before Connie caught on) I still kept turning the pages, anxious to see if I was right. And there were things in the end that I wasn't expecting. The fantasy element was there too. Who wouldn't want to have an old 17th century home beachfront home in Marblehead complete with mysteries to discover dumped into their lap? I know I would!