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History, Mystery and Witchery

Hopefully you are enjoying the spectacular colors of autumn as much as I am, even if you have to go through the “joy” of raking all those leaves. When your body’s sore from all that work, treat yo’self with some hot apple cider and some almost-as-fantastic-as-apple-pie-books.  Here are some of my favorite selections for these colder and windier days.



Outlander by Diana Gabaldon: Gabaldon’s been around for awhile, but if, like me, you’ve just binge watched the entire first season of the Starz adaptation, you should check out the original novel, which is a bit science fiction, a bit romance and a bit adventure.  It begins as World War II is ending in 1945.  English nurse Claire Beauchamp Randall and husband Frank go on a second honeymoon to reconnect after years apart.  Virtually strangers, they find their footing in their marriage once again, only for Claire to accidently step through an ancient stone circle.  She wakes up in 18th century Scotland and is soon responsible for nursing of a band of Scottish cattle thieves along with her future love interest, young Scottish warrior James Frazier.  From there she is taken to the Laird of the castle, where she is held against her will and her strength is tested again and again as she plots to escape her confinement.



The Secret History by Donna Tartt: Need a good old fashioned psychological thriller/New England murder mystery?  Then this is the one for you.  Set in a pompous Vermont college, the book closely follows the lives of a group of classical scholars. This is not a whodunit, but asks why a group of friends could violently murder a stranger.  Part psychological suspense, part murder mystery, this is an intelligent and masterful story.



The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane by Katherine Howe: A beautifully written novel that pays careful attention to historical detail, this book travels seamlessly back and forth in time between 1991 and the Salem witch trials.  In 1991, PhD candidate Connie Goodwin decides to spend her summer researching her doctoral dissertation.  While dealing with the sale of her grandmother’s house (where she finds elixirs, healing herbs and other mysterious antiques), she discovers a 17th century Bible with a key.  Her curiosity piqued, she decides to unravel the mystery of a name contained within:  Deliverance Dane, a supposed witch.   A great, carefully researched book filled with history and witches.

What’s your favorite genre for sweater weather? Let us know in the comments!

-Whitney Z.


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