The atmosphere in Yovanoff’s latest is eerily reminiscent of To Kill a Mockingbird, if only Harper Lee’s Maycomb residents had been given magical families as a focus for their bigotry.
New South Bend is a typical small town, where families have known each other for generations and intolerances simmer just beneath the surface. Tension runs high between the “craft” people, town outcasts because of the magical qualities inherited from their “fiend” ancestors, and the everyday townspeople. Once, years earlier, at a time when the craft ran amok causing chaos, many townspeople burned craft homes and killed craft people, an event that has come to be known as “the reckoning.” Few people realize that a young craft girl, Clementine, was magically bound and left in a trancelike state in the cellar of a burned home. When Fisher, who has more than a touch of craft blood in him, unearths Clementine, now a teenager, history begins to repeat itself. As Fisher and Clementine are drawn to each other, the craft become increasingly unruly. But this time, Clementine, fueled by her pure heart and her unique ability to enhance others’ powers, is determined to control the craft and avoid another bloody confrontation. Yet old habits die hard, and Clementine finds her potential craft allies may prefer revenge for their reckoning.
This beguiling amalgamation of the magical and modern worlds will have readers mesmerized. (Urban fantasy. 12-18)