Monday, October 3, 2016

Book Review: Yesternight

Published By: William Morrow
Publication Date: October 4, 2016
Page Count: 384
Source: ARC Kindly Provided by Publisher via Edelweiss
Audience: Adult - Historical Fantasy

Cat Winters always blends history and fantasy in a chilling way. Yesternight is no exception to this trend, and in some ways, Yesternight is her creepiest novel yet.

The year is 1925 and Alice Lind is working for the Oregon Education Department. Alice moves from town to town giving IQ tests to students and recommending placement for those who are advanced or struggling. Her job takes her to Gordon Bay, a small coastal town, where her entire life will change course. In Gordon Bay, Alice becomes intrigued by a young girl named Janie O'Daire. Janie is seven years old, but claims to remember her past life as Violet Sunday, a nineteen year old mathematical genius who died in a freezing lake. Alice must determine if her training as a psychologist will rule out or if she will entertain the idea that reincarnation may be possible.

As Alice begins to to investigate Janie's story, she finds that the world is not as black and white as it should be. Her own childhood is colored in shades of gray. Janie's story will inspire her to dive into her past to find answers.

The reincarnation angle was well done and thought provoking. I certainly would be freaked out if my child began to ask to be called by a different name and remembered specific details of a place he had never visited. 

There were moments when I was reading this one at night that I had to put it aside because my imagination kept running away with me. This is a perfect October read. The ending was unexpected and darkly satisfying.

One Last Gripe: Alice is a difficult character to like at times.

Favorite Thing About This Book: The paranormal elements

First Sentence: I disembarked a train at the little log depot at Gordon Bay, Oregon, and a sudden force - a charging bull - immediately slammed me to the ground.

Favorite Character: Janie

Least Favorite Character: Stu from Graduate School

From the author of The Uninvited comes a haunting historical novel with a compelling mystery at its core. A young child psychologist steps off a train, her destination a foggy seaside town. There, she begins a journey causing her to question everything she believes about life, death, memories, and reincarnation.

In 1925, Alice Lind steps off a train in the rain-soaked coastal hamlet of Gordon Bay, Oregon. There, she expects to do nothing more difficult than administer IQ tests to a group of rural schoolchildren. A trained psychologist, Alice believes mysteries of the mind can be unlocked scientifically, but now her views are about to be challenged by one curious child.

Seven-year-old Janie O’Daire is a mathematical genius, which is surprising. But what is disturbing are the stories she tells: that her name was once Violet, she grew up in Kansas decades earlier, and she drowned at age nineteen. Alice delves into these stories, at first believing they’re no more than the product of the girl’s vast imagination. But, slowly, Alice comes to the realization that Janie might indeed be telling a strange truth.

Alice knows the investigation may endanger her already shaky professional reputation, and as a woman in a field dominated by men she has no room for mistakes. But she is unprepared for the ways it will illuminate terrifying mysteries within her own past, and in the process, irrevocably change her life.

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