A story about the Salem Witch Trials and it happening in the present tense too – yes please! Katherine Howe does it again. Told in alternating storylines we hear from Colleen, in the present (2012), who lives in Danvers, Massachusetts (formerly Salem Village). There is an outbreak of odd tic-like behaviors, hair falling out, paralysis, coughing up pins, and more. Colleen’s story goes through the beginning of the outbreak, several possible conclusions, and what ends up happening. Throw in senior year in high school, super-competitive Catholic school, college applications to the top schools, and a small bit of boy/girl relationships, you have the perfect mix of life for Colleen’s story. The opposing storyline is told by Ann Putnam Jr., who is confessing what really happened during the Witch Trials in 1692. It is told in small doses, to the current Reverend of Salem Village in 1706. Her chapters start with her speaking to the Reverend in 1706, then jumps back to 1692 as she remembers what happened.
Katherine Howe pulls from trial transcripts, current events, and more to create this well-balanced story. An awesome read for YA through all adults!