The Fifth Petal

 29741905Summary: The New York Times bestselling author of The Lace Reader returns to Salem with this spellbinding new thriller, a complex brew of suspense, seduction and murder.

When a teenage boy dies suspiciously on Halloween night, Salem’s chief of police, John Rafferty wonders if there is a connection between his death and Salem’s most notorious cold case, a triple homicide dubbed “The Goddess Murders,” in which three young women, all descended from accused Salem witches, were slashed on Halloween night in 1989. He finds unexpected help in Callie Cahill, the daughter of one of the victims newly returned to town. Neither believes that the main suspect, Rose Whelan, respected local historian, is guilty of murder or witchcraft.

But exonerating Rose might mean crossing paths with a dangerous force. Were the women victims of an all-too-human vengeance, or was the devil raised in Salem that night? And if they cannot discover what truly happened, will evil rise again?


Review: 4 stars

I was drawn to The Fifth Petal because it was about Salem witches. I have always found myself drawn to this subject because I love witches. I would really love to visit Salem. I recently watched the television series on Netflix called Salem. The Fifth Petal is a story that intertwined the historical witch trials with present day characters who live in present day Salem.

I would probably classify this as a work of literature. It is a work of art willed with symbols, yet written in a way that is reader friendly, unlike a lot of classic literature. It is a mix of genres that seamlessly blends mythology, fantasy and a good mystery with its well woven plot. This is more of a story driven, rather than plot driven story though.

I found myself liking the characters, yet I didn’t overly love them. Rose was probably my favorite character. The relationships were all very complex. I loved that they related the characters in present day to their ancestors who were alive during the time of the witch trials.

Every aspect of this book was well researched and it was clear throughout the story that the author knew her subject. But at times it felt as if the story could go on forever and I found myself quite bored during the first half of part three. I felt as if the pacing was a little drawn out.

This was a beautifully crafted piece of fiction. Overall I really did enjoy it. I wish it was filled with a bit more witchcraft though. I would recommend this to those interested in Salem or those who like a touch of literature in their fiction reading. This was a story that came together beautifully that I am proud to have on my book shelf.

3 thoughts on “The Fifth Petal

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    1. I mean that rather than the plot being what the purpose of the story is, it is the story itself that is the purpose. Kind of like The Great Gatsby. I find this to be true of a lot of literature. Like Catcher in the Rye I believe was kind of like that too.


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