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The Curse of Misty Wayfair

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Do you believe in ghosts? If not, how do you explain multiple appearances of a woman long known to be dead? And when that same face haunts the area a century later? 

In 1908, Thea is a traveling post-mortem photographer seeking to find her history. Left at an orphanage as a small child, Thea desires to find her mother—dead and buried. But will that resolve her feelings of being unwanted? When Thea stumbles upon her own doppelganger, it only leads to more questions about her past.
Heidi receives a mysterious letter from her estranged mother who is suffering from dementia. The secrets implied in the letter are enough to bring Heidi to the town where her sister and mother now live—a town she believes she has no ties to. But upon arrival, Heidi wanders through a shop and stumbles upon an antique photo album. Inside the album is a picture of a woman who looks just like Heidi. Who is this woman, and is there a connection between this photograph from the past and Heidi’s family?

The descriptive writing was wonderful. I felt fearful on the path through the woods and in the dark streets of the early 1900s. The characters were unique and quite likeable. There were a couple of spots where I had to concentrate to keep straight the who’s who of the historical characters, but it all was made clear—in an amazing way. I was impressed by the way this author tied all the mysteries into a tidy, satisfying bundle. 

This interesting time-hop weaves an intricate tale of ancient and contemporary doppelgangers, murder, and family betrayal. The story also delves into the stigma and treatment of mental illness—including the inhumane treatments of the past. Ultimately, it’s a story about finding fulfillment by focusing on our Creator rather than trying to find our purpose in life, and how God has gifted each of us—no matter how we might view our circumstances. It’s a tale of acceptance, forgiveness, and healing.

This book kept me turning pages late into the night. I look forward to reading more from this author.
I give this book FIVE stars and a big, fat zero on the blush-factor scale.
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What an exciting book!  The opening line, “melancholy was a condition of the spirit and soul, but also of the mind,” draws you in with its eerie mystery immediately and the grip of the words does not let up until the last page.  This book has ghost like suspense that left me with heart pounding and eyes scanning to find solutions to the supernatural.  I love Jaime Jo Wright’s writing as it is packed with details that allow me to really envision each scene and imagine the thrilling events.  She has such a unique gift!  The characters are rich in depth with imperfections and struggles that are realistic and relatable.  Jaime Jo tackles difficult social topics in this book, including but certainly not limited to, autism and its effects on loved ones, depression and anxiety and its misconceptions, childhood trauma and its psychological aftereffects, and the treatment of the mentally ill in the early 20th century.  What a phenomenal read!  I could hardly put the book down and stayed up much too late on several evenings to finish it (really, my only complaint here is the lack of sleep I had while reading, ha!).  The central theme of identity is clearly woven so uniquely throughout and ultimately draws on the Christian principle of identity in Christ.  I did not used to like split time novels, but Jaime Jo has a special gift to craft books that weave together a story that comes together into a well-structured and satisfying ending, and has definitely made me a fan of these books.  I truly loved this book and cannot wait to see what she pens next!  Most highly recommended!
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Jaime Jo Wright has written another eerily suspenseful split time novel.  The Curse of Misty Wayfair grabs the reader from the first page with its haunting, almost poetic dialogue.  The story lines, taking places during two separate time periods, are connected  by a common thread,  which only adds to the sense of mystery in this novel.  I do have to say that my preference was for the Historical timeline.  It was intriguing and kept me guessing until the end.  I had no idea until the end of the book what exactly was taking place and who was involved.    The conclusion of this book was both chilling and shocking!  I love being surprised by the end of a novel!
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Outstanding, absolutely outstanding! 
Jaime Jo Wright is an author to watch! 
I have read each of her books and the stories keep me coming back for more! 

Firmly entrenched in this well-written time slip novel from the first page, I truly am struggling to find the appropriate words with which to describe how wonderful this story is. Honestly, the most complimentary thing I can say is you must read The Curse of Misty Wayfair! 

Please head to your favorite book dealer or library or borrow from a friend.  

Trust me, you-do-not-want-to-miss-this-one! 

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher and NetGalley and am not required to provide a positive review. All thoughts and opinions therein are solely my own.
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I’m just going to start this review by saying I cannot do this book justice. Secondly, in discussing this book, I want to assure you this may be a spooky story, but it is not a ghost story. 

This is a brilliant read...Thea,Emma, and Heidi are my favorite characters. The characters really drive the story...which is a deep one. The author writes a spectacular novel to bring forth several wonderful Biblical truths. It’s one of those novels that I don’t think one read fully gives you everything. 

A split time read with pictures of the dead, an old asylum, and a family feud that makes for a creepy but mesmerizing read that I still find in my thoughts from time to time. The author slowly throughout the book reveals pieces of the mystery and the faith theme...it’s like pealing back something deceptive to reveal the truth underneath that so few want known. Impossible to describe but definitely a must read— just please go buy it. There is just SO much in this book...so many truths.

Don’t be put off by the spooky...all things aren’t what they seem with the legend of Misty Wayfair...but her Creator is everywhere...and just waiting to be found by anyone who seeks Him.

I received this book from the publisher. All opinions are my own.
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Jaime Jo Wright's book just keep getting better and better all the time (and they started out as pretty impressive). Right from the first page the story grabbed me, both Thea's and Heidi's. Part of it is the creepy, dark tone that is so prevalent in Wright's stories, something thrillingly different from most anything else I typically read. And the other part is that Wright is just one good writer. I cannot say which heroine I liked more--both are compelling, sympathetic, misunderstood, searching . . . but both are strong in their own way, even amongst their myriad of weaknesses.

It boggles my mind how the author can write such a complex book, where threads from the past and present intertwine, where every scene, every page is important because the details all matter. It isn't as cut and dried as a typical mystery/suspense, where the subconscious goal of the reader is to figure out the villain or the mystery. Here I can read with such enjoyment that my thoughts aren't subtly distracting me by trying to figure everything out. I'm just along for the ride. And it's a dark, spooky, heart-breaking, yet hopeful and satisfying ride.

Depression and mental disorders are something that doesn't come up much in Christian fiction, at least certainly not to the degree that Wright has in this story (and she does a wonderful job of it, based on my minimal knowledge). What is apparent on the surface is not always indicative of the turmoil beneath, and there are a lot of characters who aren't all that they seem, like Heidi and her cheery, hopeful outward appearance that disguises her constant fear and threat of panic attacks. But some, like Rhett and his mom, are wonderfully what-you-see-is-what-you-get, in all the best ways, sharing the love of Christ with the lost.

It is spectacular. For anyone who enjoys a spooky ghost story, I highly recommend it.
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The Curse of Misty Wayfair by Jaime Jo Wright opens with “Melancholy was a condition of the spirit and the soul, but also of the mind. Still, she’d never seen melancholy claim a life and be the cause of a body laid to rest in permanent sleep.” Mary Coyle’s death, in 1908, is explained away as melancholy and a family curse in action. Thea, a post-mortem photographer who has recently arrived in town, is both saddened and perplexed by Mary’s death and the town’s apathy towards it.

100 years later, Heidi arrives in the same town. Her first stop is at an antique shop and, upon opening a photo album, she sees herself staring out of a century old photo. I love the visual Jamie creates with her words throughout the novel such as  “Antique shops intrigued her, yet they also could be unsettling. At least in a mortuary, things stayed dead – presumably – but in places like this? Ghosts loitered in corners, under furniture, were released when one uncapped a cardboard hatbox, or reflected in old mirrors – like this one.” They are haunting and beautiful!

A letter draws both our leading ladies to Pleasant Valley. Shortly after arriving both encounter the legend of the long-dead Misty Wayfair and her ghostly actions. Each has a mystery surrounding their family and the truth is woven into the town’s history. Digging into the finding the truth, both Thea and Heidi find themselves in deeply creepy situations, a haunting asylum and encountering dangerous people. 

“She glanced behind her, thoroughly convinced the woman in the window was chasing her down the curved driveway, screaming with a gaping mouth in a chasm so large an unsuspecting victim could fall into it and never return. Thick forest rose on either side of the drive, unwelcoming to the sunlight that tried to pierce through and warm the earth.” Its best to plan to read this on in one go, I couldn’t put it down! I wanted to know what happened and I wanted to be able to explain away all the spine-chilling happenings!

In the midst of the gothic mystery, Jaime brings in God’s light and His promise to love us as His adoptive children.  “You are created to be an image of your Creator, my dear. That is a great honor. To be designed as Thea Reed, and signed by the mark of the Artist himself. You are a work of genius. But until you know that, your name, your roots, your past, and your future will be what you chase after. Like a leaf that blows in the wind. I would bid you all the best in catching it, only, if you do, it won’t satisfy. You will still wonder who Thea Reed is, long after your primary questions have been answered.” My favourite part of Jaime’s novels is how she explains in real-world ways what feel decidedly other-worldly, it’s both so clever and enjoyable!

It’s a five out of five on the en-JOY-ment scale and highly recommended! I am so looking forward to more books from Jaime!
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The Curse of Misty Wayfair by Jaime Jo Wright is the author's third book and maybe her best so far.  Having read Jaime's previous two books, I was excited to read the third one.  Here, she brings the same skillful storytelling that she is known for.  But this book stands apart from her first two in bringing a whole new level of suspense and creepiness.  I absolutely loved it!  I love reading mysteries and thrillers and not many books terrify me.  This book did just that.  I had some trouble reading it at night, which never happens.  Jaime is so talented in her ability to tell two stories simultaneously and weave multiple decoys and terrifying events in both story lines.  Honestly, Jaime could teach a class on how to build suspense and I am positive that many experienced writers would want to take it.  Who is this book for?  Don't be deterred by the suspense.  This book is for anyone who loves amazing storytelling, historical fiction, and novels filled with tangible hope.  I love the novel's strong theme of hope that is rooted in who God is yet never comes across as too preachy.  I believe this book would appeal to people of many different background and ages.  Don't miss this book!  2019 is only beginning but I think I just read one of the best books of the year. I received a digital copy of this book from the author with no obligations and would have purchased it anyway.  These opinions are entirely my own.
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It takes a special talent to write a very faith based ghost story.  Like super special!  It takes a special talent to write a suspense story that really trails over into thriller-ish-ness with a smidge of action-y-ness and keep it solidly grounded in faith.  I don't have that talent.  Fortunately, I know someone who does.  If you want to pick up a book that you aren't sure reading at bedtime is a good idea but that will continually draw you deeper toward God then pick up anything by Jamie Jo Wright and you can't be disappointed.  'The Curse of Misty Wayfair' is her most recent (she has three now!) book and there's not a misstep about it.  She kept me guessing until the absolute last second (I might have re-read just to make sure I read it right guessing), kept me engaged in the subtleties of real life, and gave me nuggets of wisdom to dwell on.  I even loved the sideways, oh so subtle, and thank the gravy it wasn't insta, romance.

This book, though, was more than just a ghost story.  I mean, that was pretty awesome but. . . Remember the subtleties of real life mention?  So, about that.  If you have never heard of Nelly Bly I need you to copy and paste her name into Google.  I'll wait.  . . . . done learning all the things?  The way we deal with even the slightest hint of mental illness has changed dramatically in the last century.  It's ever evolving and changing, hopefully for the better.  At one time even something as benign as a seizure disorder was grounds to be locked away for life, often times experimented on searching for a *cure*, and sometimes so much worse.  Remind me someday to tell you the story of my dad.  He could have been one of these situations.  Seizures weren't the only thing that could land you in permanent lockup or in polite society the sanatorium.  Our understanding of human nature, the human brain, and how we all relate to each other has grown by leaps and bounds.  Our definitions of 'mental illness' have changed even in my adult lifetime.  There were marked changes between Thea's time and Heidi's.  However, I feel like Heidi felt herself limited by stereotypes.  Go figure right?  The thing is, follow me here, while this book really brought forth the boundary of how we view (and treat) those that are different than us in some way it didn't feel one iota of what this book was about.  It was just life happening to two women in two different time periods from two different perspectives.  shouldn't that be how life really is?

There are so many little things that pop up for me when I think about this book.  So mind tidbits I want to share with you.  So many profound thoughts and silly moments.  But to share all that's in my head I'd first have to master that thought to word thing (words hard!) and I'd have to write a book about a book.  And Jamie did that, well the book part not the about.  You know what I mean.  When I said earlier about how you can't be disappointed with this book.  I absolutely meant it, it goes so far beyond won't because won't leaves wiggle room.  The times jumps dance seamlessly between Thea and Heidi.  The relationship are grounded and well developed without being too insta- (I mean we know how I feel about insta-).  Somethings felt like they might be too easy, but they weren't.  If I told you all the things I want to share I'd be here for days and you know that battery does die on the laptop.  Outside of my mother, who loves a good mystery but not a slight fright, I can't think of anyone who this book is not perfect for.  There are so many nuances and subtleties that I can assure you it's a re-read classic.

I was provided a complimentary copy of this book by Bethany House, NetGalley. I was not compensated for this review and all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own. I was not required to write a positive review.
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Wow, what a book! This is my first book to read by this author and I am most certain that I will be reading everything she writes, now and in the future. The Curse of Misty Wayfair was amazing! This is a dual time novel. The first time era takes place in 1908 with the weird practice of photographing the dead. Then a hundred years later a picture from that era turns up at an auction in an old trunk along with other articles from that time. A young lady in an antique shop thumbing through an old photo album sees a picture of a dead woman who looks just like her. Even the owner of the shop commented on the fact that she looked like the dead woman. How can this possibly be? Who was this dead woman and are they connected in some way?….Thus begins one of the most interesting books I have ever read…..We have a young orphaned woman in 1908 searching to find out who she is and a young disturbed  woman a hundred years later searching to find out why she never fits in with her family and feels all alone. Wright has created strong believable characters while weaving in inherited mental illness and an old insane asylum with ghosts that torments and leaves unanswered questions. You will find yourself reading on into the night for you want to know the answers also.
Compelling, beautifully haunting and thrilling, this story will wrap itself around you. There is also the working of God to bring the unbeliever to His love…….I was provided this book by the Author and Publisher via NetGalley  and I am happy to post an honest review.
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This is the story of two women's journey to discover their identity, their family connections as well as what defined them. The story's theme of finding one's self through discovering one's Creator is logically and artistically developed in the dramatic and intricately intertwined stories of Thea Reed in 1908 and Heidi Lane in present times. The Curse of Misty Wayfair is the stuff of legends and ghost stories,but something or someone very real is behind the threatening events of Pleasant Valley, Wisconsin.

     If you have never read any of Jaime Jo Wright's work, reading this book will have you immediately looking for her previous releases. Each is haunting in its own way, and each reveals well-thought-out and important themes. If you are already familiar with her writing, the latest release will not disappoint. I am grateful for having received this book from Bethany House through NetGalley in exchange for my honest opinion. I was under no obligation to write a positive review, and received no monetary compensation.
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Advanced Reader Copy (ARC) provided by the Author and Publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an fair and honest review.

A Goodreads friend recommended this book and I read the blurb, decided it looked fascinating and requested it. Part Gothic, spooky, broody and just plain fascinating. Since I generally read romantic-suspense and romance, "The Curse of Misty Wayfair" is a whole different animal to what I'm used to. The two different time periods and characters make for an unusual plot that just draws you deeper and deeper into the intricate story. That's the good, now for the bad. The plot lines in 1908 and present are both tedious, prodding and really slow to give up any secrets or make any progress toward resolution. The only reason I keep reading is because, well, I'm hooked.

In 1908 Dorthea Reed is a traveling photographer, specializing in providing loved ones with photographs of their dead relations. She is also on a mission to uncover her own relations, if any are still alive, and is lead to Pleasant Valley, MI by a letter written on her deathbed by her guardian. In tracing her mother, Thea uncovers is a family curse, and the very mysterious man whose family has been the victim of the Curse of Misty Wayfair. As Thea is drawn to Simeon Coyle, she is drawn deeper into the mystery of Misty Wayfair and asylum that seems to be at it's center.

In the present, Heidi Lane is on a similar journey, this time lead by a letter written by her estranged mother who suffers from dementia. Heidi has her own mental health issues having suffered from an anxiety disorder from a young age. Heidi has never quite lived up to her families expectations and as a result relations are strained. The present smacks up against the past when Heidi discovers one of Thea's death portraits and the deceased could be Heidi's twin. Her search leads her to Rhett and also leads to a series of threats against her and an attempt on her life. Is it possible that Heidi's problems in the present could be related to a long dead woman's curse from the past?
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Wow! I was hooked like a helpless fish from start to finish . I love how Jaime knows how to creep people out but this novel runs so much deeper. It wasn’t just about the spokes, and the ‘edge of the seat’  twists that had me guessing until the last page. This is a novel about soul-searching, finding identity, acceptance, and most importantly hope when life deals us harshly.

I found Thea’s story more suspenseful, I mean come on, a post-mortem photographer?! It has intense scenes with the sad darkness the history of asylums have. She is surrounded by superstitious,  people claiming to see ghost, hearing voices, and skin crawling situations.

While Thea is on the outside looking into the world of mental illness, Heidi knows first hand how it feels to have anxiety attacks and to feel like an outsider. Heidi also took me through heart racing, nail biting moments but mostly her story struck a chord with me and I found myself wiping cleansing tears. Author Jaime captures the power words have to scar a person or lift one up.

The exciting way she weaves two extraordinary stories all the while extending hope is unbelievable! How can one possess so much talent? I can’t say enough about this incredible book! It’s thrilling, suspenseful, eerie, mysterious, and touching as it carries you to the gleam of hope the characters discover.
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I loved this story.  There was a lot of suspense and some creepiness.  This is a story that goes back and forth between the present and the past.  By going back and forth you learn what happened and what is currently happening.  I did not want to stop reading so stayed up later than I should on work days.  I loved the characters from the past and present.  I received a copy of this book from the author for a fair and honest opinion that I gave of my own free will.
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This truly is Jaime Jo Wright’s best book yet! They stories in this book are haunting, yet beautiful. I absolutely loved this book! I was hooked from page one! I couldn’t put it down! This is definitely going on my keeper shelf. This is one of those books that you will wish you could reread for the first time again and again! 



I received a complimentary copy from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. All opinions expressed are mine alone.
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Gothic and slightly creepy thriller of a story...Even though the cover looks a bit creepy, I was not expecting the actual creep factor to be quite so strong! :)

I suggest that this book is not read at bedtime! (or if you do, prepare yourself to read until you finish it!!)

No, there are no ghosts to be found anywhere. But I wondered for awhile....

What you do find is mysterious sightings in the evening....one person sees someone that nobody else is able to see. There are weird messages being left.

And what about an eerie building hidden deep in the woods....one that just happened to be an insane asylum, once upon a time...?

The suspense keeps building...and you keep on wondering....wondering just what is going on!

As in her earlier books, there are two time lines going on. Heidi in the modern day one, and Thea in the historical one.

They are both on a journey. To find themselves, literally, and also in other ways. It's quite intriguing. It was interesting to see how both characters' lives played out. Many similarities, and yet so very different.

And Ms Wright did such a fabulous job at tying everything together in the end.

This book addresses a very relevant subject of mental health. One that I enjoyed (well, that's not really the word I want, but I guess it works...) being more informed about. Specifically in how those issues were treated in days gone by.

If you enjoy historical suspense, you won't want to miss this!!

Disclaimer: I receive complimentary books from various sources, including, publishers, publicists, authors, and/or NetGalley. I am not required to write a positive review, and have not received any compensation. The opinions shared here are my own entirely. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255
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The author has us spanning centuries with the same family in a small area of Wisconsin, and how are they connected, they are but? We keep guessing and was surprised how the pieces all fell together.
People hiding deep secrets, and wow when they begin to unfold, I never saw some of them coming.
A compelling page turner that will keep you up late reading and searching for answers.

I received this book through Net Galley and the Publisher Bethany House, and was not required to give a positive review.
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Heidi has long been marked as the wayward, irresponsible child. She was born nearly fourteen years after her older, reliable sister Vicki, to whom the burden of sustaining the family’s Wisconsin lakefront resort has fallen. Because of a cryptic letter her mother sent, Heidi has returned to visit her mother with dementia for the first time in years. While roaming an antiques shop, she discovers a photo album over a century old, and a woman in it who could be her identical twin. On the way to discovering who this woman was and what their possible connection could be, Heidi unravels more about her own and the town’s history, including the legend of Misty Wayfair. She must deal with the consequences of fear and learn how to handle her anxiety in order to save herself, garner new friendships, and restore her family relationships.
Thea Reed, a wandering photographer who specializes in portraits of the recently deceased as mementos for their families, has found her way into the same Wisconsin town, Pleasant Valley, about 100 years prior. On a photo shoot, she works for a family who the town says is cursed by the ghost of Misty Wayfair. Each member of the Coyle family is doomed to die tragically and young. Only a grieving brother and sister remain. It is said that the asylum they live near, where the sister, Rose works as a nurse, is haunted by the ghost of Misty Wayfair, a woman who was murdered and dropped into a well beneath the building’s foundation.
Both women are seeking to achieve their berth in this strange town, to befriend the right people (including surly, unusual men), and to understand their family’s histories and secrets. The Curse of Misty Wayfair is about two social outcasts across a century finding their place in society’s rules and religion, in their own mental preservation, and within their families.
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Jaime Jo Wright has done it again. The Curse of Misty Wayfair is her best book yet. She takes us between two storylines, which protagonists in both time period believing they are seeing the ghost of Misty Wayfair. Misty Wayfair was killed tragically and said to be haunting the town of Pleasant Valley. Thea Reed comes to town in 1908 as photographer and quickly gets involved in the town legend of Misty Wayfair. In present day, Heidi Lane comes home to Pleasant Valley to help her mother and finds out her family has its own secrets. 
The Curse of Misty Wayfair was the most suspenseful, even creepy, book I have read in a while. It was also the best with an ending I did not suspect.
I received a complimentary copy of this book through NetGalley in exchange of honest review. I will be buying this book as gifts as it's that good!
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"You're like a sailor's siren, Thea.  Dangerous.  I don't know why, but you call me with a silent song.  I'm afraid you will wreck me."

Wow.  Just wow.  This is the first book by Jaime Jo Wright that I have read and it is absolutely amazing!  The writing is lyrical, melodic, and haunting.  The plot has delicious twists and turns as Thea works out her heritage in 1908 and Heidi works our her own in current day Wisconsin.  The characters are so real and memorable.  And the author manages to provide stark, vivid, and somewhat chilling description of the asylum and the awful practices in early 1900s, as well as an inside look at anxiety and dementia during the current day, while painting a high level of eerie suspense into the background.

I truly enjoyed meeting Thea and Simeon from 1908 Pleasant Valley, WI.  Thea is a tender, loyal, and loving woman who comes to Pleasant Valley to try to find her mother.  Her work as a traveling post-mortem photographer has her meeting Simeon who is a faithful, loyal, and sweet man from an ostracized family in the town.  The folklore of Misty Wayfair and her supposed ghost that is haunting Simeon's family become central to their relationship as Thea and Simeon work together to figure out what happened to Thea's mother.

Heidi, with her flighty and rebellious ways, and Rhett, with his brooding yet intelligent and loyal ways, work together in current day Pleasant Valley to figure out why Heidi's mother, who is suffering from dementia, has called her to the town where she now resides in a memory unit.  The folklore of Misty Wayfair, which is tied to the town itself, resurfaces in Heidi and Rhett's relationship but you will be surprised at how the "curse" plays out in the end.

The spiritual truths, given by Simeon in 1908 and Rhett and his mother Connie in current day, are spot on and provide the needed light in both Thea and Heidi's life as they navigate their dark pasts.

What an incredible read!  I must go back and read The House on Foster Hill and The Reckoning at Gossamer Pond.  If you enjoy well-written suspense, you will love this book.  And it has a dual timeline as an added bonus!

I was given a copy of this book by the author and Bethany House Publishers and was under no obligation to post a positive review.  All comments and opinions are solely my own.
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