Review by Janine
This is the story about the three Cahill sisters: Cate, Maura and Teresa, and they share a secret, one with fatal consequences. They are witches. Witches once used to be everywhere, but the Brothers have come in and destroyed most of them. Now that the Brothers have taken over, no one is above suspicion. Those who are accused are sent to prison ships, an asylum, or are murdered. No one takes this threat more seriously than Cate. As her mother lay dying, she entrusted her oldest daughter to keep their secrets and, more importantly, to keep her sisters safe. Cate must keep this secret from everyone including their father, housekeepers and servants--anyone who would potentially do them harm. As things begin to spin out of Cate’s control, can she keep their secrets while still being true to herself?
I will start this out by saying, that I LOVED this book!!!!! What initially drew me to this book was that it was about witches. Any book with a supernatural element really appeals to me and has since the first time I read Anne Rice. What made this book even better for me was the setting, it is set in the early 1800’s, which completely gives is another element for me, believeability (which I am not even sure is word!) While I know that a book about witches, isn’t necessarily believable, it is grounded in believable elements. Those being time period, which we all know of the persecution of witches, whether real or not. Another being the setting which is a town that you would consider to be typical, one with class systems, where girls are to be trained according their place in the town and behave in such a way that is above reproach. At the beginning of the book, Cate is just another 16 year old living in her town trying to watch over and protect her sisters. Protecting them from the Brotherhood, who would just as soon turn them in as witches and from being caught doing witchcraft. When a governess arrives from the Sisterhood to train them to be proper ladies, Cate knows that something isn’t what it seems, and she is doing everything she can to figure out what it is. There is so much underlying in this story, but to me is things aren’t always what they seem to be. In this book, so much of what you first think of something or someone changes as you read further on. That is what made me keep reading, the twists and turns just when you think you have figured one person out, they change. I also love the complicated relationship of the sisters themselves. That to me helped make the book, more “real” to me. For as much as you learn in this book about the girls and their lives, is as much (as I think back) that I don’t know. This is one of those books that has it all: a love story, witches, complicated friendships, difficult siblings and a governess who is more than what she seems. I am glad that I waited to read this because the next one is coming out soon and I can’t wait to read it!!!