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The Fifth Petal: A Novel by Brunonia Barry
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The Fifth Petal: A Novel

by Brunonia Barry

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Showing 1-5 of 138 (next | show all)
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I thought I would like this story more than I did. I mean, Salem. The witch trials. What isn't there to love? I feel like it dragged a bit and I couldn't connect with the main character. I would however recommend this story because I can see why others would enjoy it. Overall very good, just not my cup of tea. 3.5 out of 5 stars. ( )
  Beammey | Jun 20, 2017 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
This story takes place in modern day Salem, but also draws on the history of the witch trials. It's a murder mystery with a somewhat convoluted plot. It's somewhat overly long and too complicated, but it works overall. Rose Whelan believes that there's a connection between the women executed for witchcraft and the women who were murdered in modern times. She used to be a scholar studying the witch trials, but now she's considered to be mentally ill, and the prime suspect in the murders of the Goddesses, who were young girls who lived with her at the time they were murdered. Rose, and Callie, the daughter of one of the murdered women, are the only survivors of that horrible night when the women were brutally murdered.

Callie returns as an adult to Salem to care for Rose, and gets involved with others in the town. The murder investigation is reopened and many in the town are drawn into it. The conclusion is neatly drawn, even if it does take a while to get there. This was a unique story and I was interested to the very end.
  drsyko | Jun 18, 2017 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Halloween 1989: Callie Cahill, age 5, witnesses a murder. Halloween 2014: Callie Cahill returns to Salem, MA…

Salem’s infamous unsolved mystery, The Goddess Murders is brought back into the limelight after another baffling death 25 years to the day. A stranger arrives who appears to have a connection to the town but how? She is soon more entangled than she wanted to be and struggles with her involvement to both crimes.

When I read this I was not aware that there was a previous book by the author, it is only as I write the review that I discovered and can’t help but wonder if it would change my opinion. I was immediately drawn in to the tale but lost my interest when the story shifted setting more than halfway through, it was brief but it seemed a bit disjointed. It read as a stand-alone story as all information was presented but I can't help but wonder if I missed something about the characters. It was very ‘witchcraft-y’ at first and then seemed to shift focus, which I wished was not the case. My minor gripe- how much does a 5 year old remember, apparently a lot… ( )
  Shuffy2 | Jun 13, 2017 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
*I received this book through LibraryThing Early Reviewers.*

This is a fun mystery that blends the history of the Salem Witch Trails with a modern-day cold case and a bit of magic added to the mix. I enjoyed this book more than its predecessor the Lace Reader and I would say it's not necessary to read this series in order. Overall, fun reading and would likely make a great read right around Halloween! ( )
  wagner.sarah35 | Jun 6, 2017 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Wow. Just... wow. I received this as an ARC from the publisher (I think) through Librarything, and I can't say how excited I was to get it. I've been putting in for this book for months, although I didn't realize it came out in January.

Anyway, wow. This book was excellent. The only issue I had with it, and it's a personal issue, not anything against the author or her work, is that the book really made my anxiety spike. I can't really put my finger on why, to be honest. The whole thing was bewitching. Completely bewitching. I'd find myself reading before bed, just to relax a little, and before I knew it I was wide awake and 2 hours had past.

Having not read the first book in the series, I think I can honestly say that I didn't get too lost with the relationships in this book. There are one or two that were a little difficult to really figure out, at first, but Barry was nice enough to explain them later in the book to whatever extent it was necessary to the plot. Most of the ones in question centered around Salem's chief of police, John Rafferty. I'm assuming the series follows him, although he is never really the truly central character. His role is incredibly important though because without him, the plot would never advance and we'd have no idea what was going on in the murder cases. Callie's visions can only take us so far when it comes to that stuff.

Callie is a pretty good character as well, although I wish there was a little more to her. The same goes for Rose. Actually, especially Rose. I wanted more from those two than a commitment-fearing sound therapist and a former scholar who completely lost her mind and is permanently in a state somewhere between trance and mild coherence, respectively. Maybe I wanted the swings with Rose to be more extreme? I really can't say for sure, but I definitely wanted something more from her. Oh, and not that it has anything to do with the book, per say, but I really liked that Callie was a sound therapist and the descriptions of her work and process. That was different.

Alright, I'm rambling now and this is a terrible review, but the book really is excellent, even as a stand alone. I'd definitely recommend reading it, but be careful. It WILL pull you in. ( )
  cebellol | Jun 6, 2017 |
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Epigraph
It will have blood, they say: blood will have blood.
Stones have been known to move, and trees to speak ...
William Shakespeare, Macbeth
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For Gary
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Isn't it a little late for praying?
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