Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Book Review: The Ghosts of Aquinnah by Julie Flanders

Title: The Ghost of Aquinnah
Author: Julie Flanders
Publisher: Ink Smith Publishing (December 5, 2013)
Genre: Paranormal

Format Read: Ebook ARC
Length: Novel
Source: Author

A brilliant flash of light transcends through time.

Another freezes a cloaked figure within a frame of salty mist as waves crash against a rocky shore. Her harrowing expression shadows the beacon to a pinprick.

By the next blaze, she is gone. Only the lighthouse remains.

Hannah’s eyes blink in step with each heartbeat. Images of her deceased parents and Martha’s Vineyard explode like firecrackers inside her mind.

She shakes her head.

For weeks this eerie woman dressed in nineteenth century garb has been haunting my webcam, but tonight she stared into my soul.

Why? ...

Who is she? ...

Casting aside months of research on historic lighthouses, Hannah drives to the coast and boards a ferry.

What is the strange connection she has to this mysterious woman suspended in time?

Hannah finds out.

But, it’s not at all what she expects ...

Hannah unravels a century old murder.

Teaser: It was almost as if he could see her spirit dripping out from her body and collecting in a puddle at her feet. [27% Ebook ARC. Loved this imagery.]

Review: A woman on a mission, Hannah seeks the mysterious woman who haunts a lighthouse in Aquinnah in Julie Flanders’ The Ghosts of Aquinnah.

This novel jumps between current time (2013) and historical Martha’s Vineyard (1884). The mysterious woman Hannah sees upon a webcam one night pulls the reader into the tale of Christopher, a shipwrecked young Irishman, and Stella, a young woman married to a man she doesn’t love. My heart ached for Christopher and Stella and the conflict of their budding feelings of love. At times the parts with Stella reminded me of Kate Chopin’s The Awakening. Josiah, Stella’s husband and the town doctor, played the perfect villain, although one a reader could sympathize with as well.

I wish we saw more of Hannah in 2013 Martha’s Vineyard and New England. The novel veered more on Christopher and Stella’s side, but I felt a connection with Hannah and had hoped to delve deeper into her life and conflicts. Her part of the story almost felt a touch anti-climactic compared to Christopher and Stella’s.

I loved the settings within this novel and how they can be beautiful with the lighthouses, greenery, and ocean waves as well as mysterious and downright creepy with the thick fog and chilly atmosphere. Flanders’ writing captured the world and the timelines of the story.

Touching and tragic, The Ghosts of Aquinnah by Julie Flanders will stick with you.

Four Bookworms = I really liked it!