Reviving the Hawthorn Sisters is now available and it’s a great one for readers looking for a modern day gothic read that easy and entertaining. It is the follow up to Burying the Honeysuckle Girls; however, Lindsay and I haven’t read it yet and felt Reviving the Hawthorn Sisters worked well as a standalone.
Eve works for the foundation started by her late faith healer Grandma, Dove, who has a few secrets buried with her. Dove’s secrets have caught up to Eve and she is forced to dig up some of those secrets, and a mystery starts to develop. The story is told through two timelines from Eve in the present, and Dove set in 1930. I enjoyed Dove’s storyline a bit more than Eve’s, and it had that gothic feel to the setting I love. I found her storyline to have a little more substance to it that drove the story forward for me. The timelines flowed easy from one to the other and I enjoyed the way it all came together in the end.
The story is far-fetched but purely entertaining and fun with a blend of quirky and dark characters to like or dislike. The mystery is intriguing, but there is a little supernatural to the story that complicated things for me. I struggled with fully engaging in the mystery or the motivation behind solving the mystery. Maybe that has to do with my dark and twisted thriller mind getting in the way. So I think this one is a great one for readers who like a well written, easy entertaining mystery with some family drama to it.
Eve’s grandmother, Dove, was a famous faith healer who died eight years ago. As a young woman, Dove was part of the Hawthorn Sisters famous traveling duo. They sang, entertained and “healed” their dedicated followers. Eve has been keeping a shocking secret about her grandmother for years — before her death Dove confided in Eve that she wasn’t a true healer, she was a con artist. Now with a documentary film being made about Dove’s life, Eve faces her grandmothers long buried secrets and uncovers several more dark pieces of her family’s past.
This novel had all the elements of a gothic, suspenseful family drama mystery — dark foreboding atmosphere, mysterious characters, long hidden family secrets, dual narrative between Past and Present. The novel flowed well between the two timelines and kept the story unfolding in an intriguing manner.
As much as this novel sounded right up my alley, there were some implausible aspects to the storyline. I didn’t connect with any of the characters and had a particularly hard time sympathizing with the main character, Eve. I struggled with buying into the mystery and the threat hanging over Eve’s head. Regardless of my lack of connection to the characters and storyline, I was able to accept the implausible scenarios and simply sit back and be entertained.
We received copies on behalf of Emily Carpenter to read and review.