October is my favorite month, and not just because it contains my birthday. It’s also the time of year for all things supernatural. I love Halloween and I’m not ashamed to admit that it’s only October 6 and I’ve already watched Hocus Pocus. So, it seemed fitting to start this month with a ghost story. Although, as Katherine Howe says in her Author’s Note – it’s “a ghost story that never used the word ghost.”

Fair warning – I’m trying not to get too spoiler-ish, but a tidbit or two might sneak through. Just a heads up in case you haven’t read the book.

Young Wes Auckerman is attending a summer film program at NYU in hopes of being accepted into the college full time in the fall. While helping a friend with his student film, Wes attends a seance and meets two girls that night: Annie, who is gone before the night ends, and Maddie, who intrigues him and gets him to buy her a pizza.

Annie finds herself shifting between her “real” life in 1825 and the present day. She is reliving the week leading up to the opening of the Erie Canal and the Grand Celebration that accompanied it, a pivotal point for her.

While Annie struggles to understand what is happening to her, Wes and his friends join forces to help her move on. Maddie, who seems oddly familiar to Wes, also intrigues him and he soon finds himself torn between the two girls.

I found the history of the book fascinating, and the interplay between Wes, his friends, and Annie kept me interested straight through. Because I read so much, it’s hard to surprise me, but there were enough twists and turns to keep me entertained.

I’ve been a huge fan of Katherine Howe since I read “The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane” several years ago. I’m a sucker for anything to do with witches, and that was a great read. My book club read “Conversion” a few years ago as well, and while our group had mixed reviews, I enjoyed it very much.

Rating: Four stars

Reason for reading: Passed to me by Mom, and as I said, I’m a fan of Katherine Howe.

Favorite Line: “I’m a Rip Van Winkle”

Tea: Plum Deluxe Full Moon Chai Tea – purchased as part of their Supernatural Trio (three teas to commemorate the end of the series.) I’ve been on a bit of a chai kick lately and this is one of my favorites so far. Just the right combination of soothing and spicy.

Photo note: The statue was a gift from Uncle Art – I don’t know who she is or anything about where she came from, but she seemed like she might fit into Annie’s era.

Stay tuned for more spookiness as October unfolds. Especially since I’m continuing on my quest to read all of Stephen King. I’m moving very quickly through the 70’s and will have a blog post on those as soon as I’m done.

Happy Haunting!

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