Wednesday, October 10, 2012
BOOK REVIEW: The Return
For generations the feud between the Joslins and the Blairs had raged with hatred on both sides. In 1973 the final scene should have played out on a lonely mountain, leaving a young mother dead and her new-born daughter in the arms of the mountain’s “witch”. Twenty-five years later, Katherine Fane brings the body of the only family she has ever known back to be buried on the mountain.
Katherine’s arrival with her Granny’s casket is met with superstitious fear by the people in Camarune, Kentucky. A calf is born with one eye; an egg with blood in its membrane is broken for breakfast; snakes appear in a barn. The people are so sure that the witch or her granddaughter has cursed the town for the things that happened in the past and things quickly get violent.
Sheriff Luke DePriest has been busy tracking an unusual thief - a thief who only takes basic necessities and leaves carved wooden pieces in their place. As the sheriff tries to keep peace in town, protect Katherine, and find the thief, an old man is watching Katherine from the woods and another shattered old man is watching through hate filled eyes the impossible conclusion to the feud that should have ended twenty-five years earlier. Home is where a person goes to be safe, to find comfort.
It was easy to get into Katherine’s mind as she found these things in Granny’s old cabin, but not in the people of the town. The conclusion of the book, although not completely unexpected and a little too neatly tied up, was still very satisfactory. By then I was so involved with the characters that I finished the book with a smile and a tear. That makes a good read.