St. Martin’s. Mar. 2023. 336p. ISBN 9781250280800. $27.99. HISTORICAL FICTION/FANTASY
DEBUT In Hart’s debut, three different women, connected across centuries by ancestry and magic, learn to control what they can to form lives despite the dangers of male violence and the control that comes from their patriarchal society. Kate Ayres has used the unexpected inheritance of her great-aunt Violet’s home, Weyward Cottage, as an escape route from an abusive marriage. As she starts to make a home in the ancient, rundown cottage, she discovers there are mysteries and secrets (witchcraft?) in Violet’s life and in the life of an ancestor, Altha Weyward, who was tried as a witch in the 17th century. The more she learns about the women who came before her, the more Kate begins to experience the magic in herself.
VERDICT The three timelines and the compelling stories of each of the women intertwine and are layered with the natural magic that runs through the female line of the Weyward family
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