- Title: The Witches of Bone Hill
- Author: Ava Morgyn
- Where to buy: Amazon (affiliate link)
- Genre: Women’s Fiction, Paranormal, Urban Fantasy
- Would I recommend: A great read for the spooky season!
Cordelia Bone’s meticulously crafted life and career in Dallas are crashing down around her thanks to a philandering husband with criminal debts.
When her older, carefree sister, Eustace—a cannabis grower in Boulder, calls to inform her the great aunt they never met has died and they must travel to a small town in Connecticut to deal with the estate, she sees an opportunity to unload the house and save herself.
But once there, the sisters learn they are getting much more than they bargained for. The Victorian mansion they stand to inherit is bound in a dynasty trust controlled by their late aunt’s aging attorney who insists they inhabit the house and retain it but keeps them in the dark about the peculiar rituals of their ancestors. Not to mention a sexy, tattooed groundskeeper with a shrouded past who refuses to leave the carriage house and a crypt full of dead relatives looming at the property line.
As both women grapple with their current predicament, they come face to face with a haunting family secret, the truth of what happened to their mother, and the enemy that’s been stalking them from the shadows for generations. In a twisting torrent of terror and blood, the sisters must uncover the power within them to heal their fractured relationship, reverse their mysteriously declining health, and claim the lineage they wanted to escape but now must embrace if they are to survive at Bone Hill.
Happy book birthday to Ava Morgyn! The Witches of Bone Hill is out today, and I am here to tell you, if you want a deliciously spine-tingling book for the Halloween season, here ya go.
If it weren’t for bad luck, real estate agent Cordelia Bone would have no luck at all. Her soon-to-be-ex-husband cheated on her (with her assistant, in their house). Not just that, but he’s racked up a truckload of debt in her name, some of it with mob connections who are now looking to collect from her. She can’t sell her house in Dallas without fixing the recently discovered black mold problem first. And then her estranged sister Eustace calls to tell her their one surviving relative, their great-aunt Augusta, has died and left them an inheritance in Connecticut. Well, maybe that will fix the money problem. So Eustace and Cordelia are off to Bellwick, Connecticut to collect an inheritance from a great-aunt they barely knew.
Why don’t they know their great-aunt? Because their mother, Maggie, fled the old home place years ago. The sisters’ childhood was spent in rough conditions, always on the move, always with their mother having one loser boyfriend after another. And then Maggie was murdered, a tattoo ripped from her very skin. So they have no idea what awaits them in Connecticut.
This story is about the power of family. The bitterness of a bond that chafes for too long. The importance of sisterhood. And most of all, it is about Cordelia and Eustace finding the voices that are truly theirs, the voices they never knew about because their mother tried to leave it all behind.
The house, Bone Hill, is truly a character in and of itself. The family attorney, Bennett Togers, tells the sisters that the house will make its will known, and it does. With all the happenings that can’t be explained and that are well out of the ordinary, it’s no wonder the town of Bellwick views the Bone family with, at best, suspicion.
The story itself gets real close to lines I don’t like to cross with its very vivid descriptions of witchcraft and with some disturbing scenes involving animals. I do, however, appreciate the Norse mythology that is at the root of the sisters’ – indeed, of their family’s – power.
And the sisters themselves are wonderfully written characters. Eustace is the easygoing one, more able to adapt to her new circumstances. Cordelia, on the other hand, grew up with her ears full of Maggie’s warnings – don’t look at them, don’t speak to them, and under no circumstances sing to them. She has a harder time adjusting, and she can’t understand why Maggie would flee from family and drag her girls through a hard-knock life. All is revealed in time, though, as Cordelia comes to grasp the true strength she and Eustace can only have together.
This is a quick, compelling read that I finished in less than 24 hours. If you’re looking for a book to give you the chills, full of vengeful spirits and newfound powers, this is it. I suggest you put The Witches of Bone Hill at the top of your October TBR.
Thanks to St. Martin’s Press and NetGalley for a review copy. All opinions here are mine, and I don’t say nice things about books I don’t actually like.