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The Lace Reader

by Brunonia Barry

Trick or treat? Towner Whitney returns home to Salem, only to set out on a scary voyage of self-discovery. Dark family secrets, benign witches and a lovely breezy sense of the sea make for a haunting and atmospheric brew. Add a genuinely surprising twist right at the end - that had me scurrying back to page one - and you've got a fun, clever read that isn't afraid to tackle some serious issues. Definitely a trick and a treat!

Extract

When we were kids, my sister, Lyndley, and I could break into any house. I was a master at picking locks. We used to break into people's houses just to sit in them - 'like Goldilocks tasting porridge and sampling beds,' Lyndley used to say. For the most part, we limited our break-ins to the summerhouses. Down at the Willows one time, we broke into a house and actually cleaned it. That's the kind of thing only a girl would do. Outlaw certainly, but homemaker, too.

Parallels

The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath
The Witches of Eastwick by John Updike
 

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