The Invited

Knopf. Apr. 2019. 368p. ISBN 9780385541381. $25.95; ebk. ISBN 9780385541398. SUSPENSE
Helen and Nate Wetherell attempt to escape their dull lives by moving to a village in Vermont, where they will build their dream home. It's even more alluring that the adjacent bog holds stories of hauntings. Helen, a historian, collects artifacts from the town's past and builds them into the house—a beam hewn from the tree used to hang Hattie Breckenridge for witchcraft in 1924, blackened bricks from a deadly fire, a carved maple mantel. She soon realizes the objects "remember" and reveal secrets of the Breckenridge family. Young neighbor Olive Kissner and her mother knew they could find Hattie's treasure, hidden in the bog 100 years earlier. When her mother leaves town mysteriously, Olive continues the search alone. Since Helen and Nate now own the bog, she decides to scare them away and quickly discovers that her own family's secrets are strangely connected to Hattie. Will Helen's home be the in-between meeting place for the dead and the living? And will Olive uncover the treasure and the key to her mother's disappearance?
VERDICT The latest from McMahon (Burntown) is like a nesting doll—a thriller inside a murder mystery inside a ghost story—and will chill readers with every sideways glimpse of a passing shadow.
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