Wednesday, August 18, 2010

review: The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane (book)

so for those of you who don't know - I worked at Border's books last year and one of the perks of working there was that we were given free rein over the ARCs (advanced reading copies) which meant we had access to the books thus receiving a sneak peak. this allowed us to be able to explain the books extremely well to the customers. we were never required to read them but usually the books were interesting enough that i would often pick one up and read it over break that way if i didn't like it i could put it down and pick another one or take the book home and finish it over a week or so. The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane is one of the books i loved!

it is a work of historical fiction that takes place during the Salem witch trials but also is set in modern times. how does it accomplish this? by oscillating between the two. The main character is Connie Goodwin, a Harvard grad student who is actually writing her doctoral dissertation on the Salem Witch trials and witchcraft.

she had planned to spend her summer doing research but when her flaky mother drops the sale of her mother's abandoned home near Salem, Connie can’t refuse. while preparing it for sale, she uncovers a very old Bible and within it, an ancient key and a piece of parchment with the name "Deliverance Dane" written on it. Spurred on by her discovery, Connie searches to find out more about this woman, her fate, and a rare find only hinted about: a "physick" book - which pages hold a hidden, dangerous knowledge.

we follow Connie through the summer as she deals with an over zealous and perhaps crazed professor, a new love interest, and struggles to find herself and her connection to Deliverance's dark past.

this novel gives the reader: mystery, love, magic, sticking it to one's mother, and affirmation of self. i give The Physick Book of Deliverance Dance 4.5 out of 5 stars. minus half a star for some cliche.

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