For August, we'll read The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane by Katherine Howe. This debut novel explores the Salem witch trials from the perspective of Connie Goodwin, a Ph.D. candidate in history at Harvard. While cleaning out her grandmother's house near Salem in the summer of 1991, Connie discovers an old key along with a fragment of paper bearing only the words Deliverance Dane. Evidence mounts that Deliverance was a local herbalist and wise woman who became a victim of the witch trials. Howe inserts short interludes featuring Deliverance and her descendants, adding depth to the story. Howe's own connection to Salem (two of her ancestors were accused of witchcraft) adds a welcome personal touch.
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