Let Katherine Howe take you back to 1692: the Salem Witch Trials. Her story shifts from the year 1991 where Connie Goodwin is a canidate at Harvard University for her PHd in the history of the colonial period. During the summer she has to get her Grandmother’s house read to sell, but something unexpected happens.
Okay, so we’ve all heard of the Salem Witch Trials, right? Everyone knows that in 1692 there was a witch panic in Salem, Massachusetts where about twenty or so innocent people were hanged. These people, obviously were going to be hanged for being considered a witch. Katherine Howe’s question was, could there have been any actual witches hanged during this time. I know the question is silly, but after reading her book, it makes me almost believe that actual witches were hanged.
Now, lets fast forward to the year 1991 in Cambridge Massachusetts. I know, these two time periods are centuries apart, but Katherine Howe magically puts them together. So, let’s meet Harvard Graduate student, Connie Goodwin, her specialty is in colonial history. She has been advanced to candicy and is writing her doctoral dissertation.
Except, her mother, Grace, wants her to clean up her grandmother’s house in Marblehead, Massachusetts. Just so you know, this house is a complete disaster. It doesn’t even have electricity, and it hasn’t been lived in for twenty years. Different, right? While Connie is cleaning the house she finds a name in a Bible. The name is Deliverance Dane. Connie, being the Harvard Grad student of colonial history, researches the name. Deliverance was excommunicated from the church in 1692, meaning she was a witch. This is very interesting, she’s living in a house where a ‘convicted witch’ had once lived. Learning this, Connie researches Deliverance even more, and finds her infamous Physick book. Only to find a history closely linked with her own.
This book is spellbinding! I couldn’t put the book down. Katherine Howe takes the past a present to make one story that is incredible. This story goes through little snippets of people’s lives in the 1690s to about 1750s and applies it to Connie’s own story. Katherine Howe gives a new look at the Salem Witch trials!