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Monday, October 12, 2020

Review: Reviving the Hawthorn Sisters by Emily Carpenter

 Reviving the Hawthorn Sisters 
by Emily Carpenter

Thank you Lake Union and NetGalley for this amazing copy.

Publisher: Lake Union Publishing
Publish Date: October 20, 2020
Kindle Edition
Standalone but follow up to Burying the Honeysuckle Girls
Genres: Historical Fiction, Mystery, Contemporary

The bestselling author of Burying the Honeysuckle Girls returns to uncover a faith healer’s elusive and haunted past.

Dove Jarrod was a renowned evangelist and faith healer. Only her granddaughter, Eve Candler, knows that Dove was a con artist. In the eight years since Dove’s death, Eve has maintained Dove’s charitable foundation—and her lies. But just as a documentary team wraps up a shoot about the miracle worker, Eve is assaulted by a vengeful stranger intent on exposing what could be Dove’s darkest secret: murder…

Tuscaloosa, 1934: a wily young orphan escapes the psychiatric hospital where she was born. When she joins the itinerant inspirational duo the Hawthorn Sisters, the road ahead is one of stirring new possibilities. And with an obsessive predator on her trail, one of untold dangers. For a young girl to survive, desperate choices must be made.

Now, to protect her family, Eve will join forces with the investigative filmmaker and one of Dove’s friends, risking everything to unravel the truth behind the accusations against her grandmother. But will the truth set her free or set her world on fire? 

My Review:

If you haven't read Emily Carpenter by now then I highly suggest that you do.  This is my fourth book by her and ding ding ding - we have another winner!  This is somewhat a 'follow-up" to Burying the Honeysuckle Girls, which I haven't read (YET), but this can absolutely be read as a standalone.  I never once felt out of sorts or like I was missing something.

Faith healers, a Southern Gothic atmosphere and buried family secrets - what more could you ask for?!  I absolutely fell in love with and appreciated Dove's spirit and tenacity.... and Eve doesn't fall far from the family tree.  With dual timelines I find I prefer one over the other and that was the same in this case as well.  I was riveted by Dove's storyline in 1934 and had to stop myself from rushing through Eve's chapters to get back to her.

Carpenter has a talent for building an atmosphere that makes you feel like you're right in the pages with her characters.  If I could go back to 1934 and become Dove's friend, I absolutely would have.  Anyone who likes interesting multi-faceted mysteries hugged with Southern charm will surely need to pick this book up.


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