Books by Beverly Butler

WITCH'S FIRE by Beverly Butler
CHILDREN'S
Released: Sept. 1, 1993

Confined to a wheelchair since the accident that killed her mother and sister, Kirsty Hamilton, 13, has just moved to Wisconsin to live with her father, his new wife, Rita, and Rita's nine-year-old daughter, Pam. Bitter and angry, Kirsty resists Pam's overtures but can't reject her fear that their house is under the spell of its previous owner—Alma Potter, a 100-year- old nursing-home resident who's rumored to be a witch. Reflected in a living-room window, a fire is visible to Kirsty when there's none in the fireplace; she also sees a nonexistent door that's open to a scene from her former life; and a witch's face assumes the witch's persona after Kirsty sketches it. Meanwhile, Pam's personality begins to alter, and it's reported that Alma Potter's decline has reversed itself; Kirsty suspects that she's sapping Pam's life in order to reclaim her own. When the girls are left alone during a blizzard, the house unaccountably fills with smoke. Kirsty confronts the witch's power, dragging herself upstairs to rescue Pam and destroy the sketch, and thus the witch. Butler combines elements from her earlier novels—a disabled heroine (Light a Single Candle, 1962) and nail-biting suspense (Ghost Cat, 1984)—for a thriller that subtly blends realism with the occult, skillfully weaving in details that build the story to its satisfying conclusion. (Fiction. 10-14) Read full book review >