Sunday, August 4, 2019

The Daughters of Temperance Hobbs - A Review & Giveaway


By Katherine Howe

Connie Goodwin is an overworked professor of American Colonial history at Northeastern. Agreeing to help a promising young scholar whose focus is syncretic and folk religions of the South and Southwest while getting weird vibes from one of her former students, Connie finds herself ignoring her boyfriend and her own health. When she discovers his life is in danger due to his relationship with her Connie seeks to end a curse that has been plaguing her family for centuries. As she researches her family line, Connie learns that the husband of Temperance Hobbs lived an exceptionally long life. Confident that there is a way to protect Sam Connie searches for Temperance's recipe. Is she strong enough to succeed? Or will Sam become yet another victim of the curse?

THE DAUGHTERS OF TEMPERANCE HOBBS illustrates the matriarchal lineage of a family of witches and the modern day attempt to stop a family curse. Alternately telling Connie's story in the year 2000 and the stories of her great grandmothers from the 1600s to the 1800s the novel looks at the lengths some women will go to protect their family as well as how far some men will go in the name of pride.

The juxtaposition of power and need is an integral part of the story. Though gifted, although perhaps because of the gift, Temperance Hobbs and her daughters struggle to survive as did their mothers before them. Barely eking out a living, the women nonetheless are strong and manage to survive. We see the bonds formed between women and we witness the patriarchy in action and see how the desire to subjugate can destroy.

THE DAUGHTERS OF TEMPERANCE HOBBS is more of a scholarly treatise than a work of fiction. While I found the matters inside fascinating, I never connected with any of the characters. I was especially disappointed in Connie's lack of concern and feeling about Arlo during the fire. However, I did really like the very ending that introduced two new characters. I also liked the historical research and the receipts, also known as recipes or spells, themselves. As for that problematic ingredient, I was more upset about Patty and Temperance's choice and don't understand the fuss over Connie's. That photograph is merely an example of a common practice, one that is still done today in many societies. I would think that a history professor would understand that.

Compelling in a more scholarly way, THE DAUGHTERS OF TEMPERANCE HOBBS tells an interesting tale of witchcraft and one family's fight to survive.


The Daughters of Temperance Hobbs: A Novel by Katherine Howe

About the Book

Occult Fiction Henry Holt and Co. (June 25, 2019) 
Hardcover: 352 pages 

New York Times bestselling author Katherine Howe returns to the world of The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane with a bewitching story of a New England history professor who must race against time to free her family from a curse.
Connie Goodwin is an expert on America’s fractured past with witchcraft. A young, tenure-track professor in Boston, she’s earned career success by studying the history of magic in colonial America—especially women’s home recipes and medicines—and by exposing society's threats against women fluent in those skills. But beyond her studies, Connie harbors a secret: She is the direct descendant of a woman tried as a witch in Salem, an ancestor whose abilities were far more magical than the historical record shows.
When a hint from her mother and clues from her research lead Connie to the shocking realization that her partner’s life is in danger, she must race to solve the mystery behind a hundreds’-years-long deadly curse.
Flashing back through American history to the lives of certain supernaturally gifted women, The Daughters of Temperance Hobbs affectingly reveals not only the special bond that unites one particular matriarchal line, but also explores the many challenges to women’s survival across the decades—and the risks some women are forced to take to protect what they love most.

About the Author

Katherine Howe is the author of the New York Times bestsellers The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane and The House of Velvet and Glass, as well as the young adult novels, Conversion and The Appearance of Annie van Sinderen. She served as editor of The Penguin Book of Witches and her fiction has been translated into over twenty languages. Descended from three women who were tried for witchcraft in Salem, she and her family live in New England and New York City, where she is at work on her next novel.

Twitter: @katherinebhowe  

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