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FATHER OF LIES by Ann Turner


by Ann Turner

Age Range: 11 & up

Pub Date: Feb. 8th, 2011
ISBN: 978-0-06-137085-4
Publisher: HarperTeen

Salem Village is a vividly cold and scary place, her neighbors a constant threat as 14-year-old Lidda struggles to silence the seductive, sometimes frightening voice that dominates her thoughts. Calling himself “Lucian, light bringer,” the voice implies that she alone has the power to end the madness afflicting some of the town’s youth. At first believing that the witch-accusers must also hear Lucian, Lidda begins to recognize the heartless lies behind their destructive behavior. Her family divides over Lidda’s increasing inability to cope; while shallow sister Susannah sides with the afflicted girls, the rest of Lidda’s relatives offer much-needed support. Turner perfectly captures the nightmare nature of Salem’s witchcraft period and of some of the outside forces that may have fueled it without ever diminishing the strength and humanity of those who distrusted and refused to support the reign of terror. Yet the town’s issues play a secondary role to Lidda’s own believable struggles with encroaching insanity—or an otherworldly paranormal force: an appraisal left for engaged readers to make. (Historical fiction. 11 & up)