The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane
by Katherine Howe
My Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Connie (Constance) Goodwin just wants to pass her qualifying exams and move onto her dissertation. When she succeeds in doing this, she feels an added pressure to find an unique primary source--a rarity in her field of New England history. Her mother needs her to go to her grandmother's house near Salem to clean it out, Connie discovers an antique key and a name: Deliverance Dane, stuck in the family bible. Who is Deliverance Dane and where does this key fit?
The writing in this book is quite lovely, gentle, so to speak with the story building to the climax of the story (which will not be revealed here as that would be a spoiler obviously). Because it builds quietly, at times you might be inclined to think the story is dragging, but if you stick with it, you are rewarded with a story that came to a satisfying conclusion with the hint of something further to come.
I was initially drawn to this book because of my love for Deborah Harkness' A Discovery of Witches, another book that explores witches though Howe's book goes much more into the historical implications here in the United States. I enjoyed this one and I look forward to reading the The Daughters of Temperance Hobbs that has only recently been published (10 years after the first). For fans of the All Souls Trilogy, you will find similarities in this book, but they are not the same. In a small way, they complement each other.