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The Sparrow Sisters


The Sparrow Sisters

Ellen Herrick brings us a spectacular debut starring three unique sisters and a town that treasures them --- at least until something awful causes the people to step back and take another look.

Granite Point, a charming seaside resort town, seemed like the ideal place for Dr. Henry Carlyle to settle, a place where he could escape from his past and build a quiet, almost anonymous new life. But he didn’t reckon on the Sparrow sisters --- Sorrel, Nettie and Patience, most especially Patience. No, he didn’t reckon on the young Sparrow, nor did he plan to fall in love with her. And from the tenor of their first meeting, it didn’t seem likely it would ever happen. The two of them got off on what you’d call the wrong foot right from the start. No wonder, really, since Patience was advising a concoction of herbs and mixtures that must have sounded like a magical potion to the doctor, by nature a man of science. Unable to control himself, he was appalled and scoffed at her advice. But he’s the new guy in Granite Point.

"...a spectacular debut... The sisters are delightful characters, and Henry is reminiscent of a lovesick schoolboy, making him an endearing man everyone wants to root for."

The Sparrows are part of the fabric of Granite Point. They have a unique history with the town, one that goes back centuries, and the town views them as their own, if a bit off center. The residents quietly think of Patience as a healer, and many come to her when they suffer from a problem that has medical types scratching their heads. The women in the area have long treated their colicky babies with something from the Sparrow sisters’ nursery and secretly dosed their husbands to ease the pains brought on by fishing or some construction project.

So if Henry wants to get close to Patience, he’ll have to swallow his skepticism and try to view what she does with an open mind. But before he has the chance, something goes terribly wrong, and soon the most supportive among the townspeople begin to doubt Patience. In fact, Henry himself has fleeting bouts of distrust. Can his lover actually put a spell on people? Has she put one on him? Is that how he was persuaded to go along with some of her ideas?

If anyone were to do a little digging, they would find that this sort of thing happened before in Granite Point. Back then, its citizens turned against the accused. That was during a time when witch hunts whipped people into a frenzy. So now, will Patience find herself deserted by everyone she has spent a lifetime helping? Or worse, will they believe she is capable of hexes and curses? Is she guilty of what they say she did? As the rumors fly and the truth is distorted, even she begins to wonder. Maybe she is wrong. Maybe all she has done is give people false hope. And maybe this time it ended in tragedy. Wherever the truth lies, Granite Point is going to have to decide what it believes, for Patience isn’t the only one on trial now. And Patience isn’t the only one who needs to do a bit of soul searching.

THE SPARROW SISTERS starts off slowly but eventually gathers speed. By the midway point, it has traction and will carry readers at a breakneck pace to its wonderful ending. The sisters are delightful characters, and Henry is reminiscent of a lovesick schoolboy, making him an endearing man everyone wants to root for. The supporting cast populates the town with people you mostly would like to know. It’s all pretty magical.

Reviewed by Kate Ayers on September 25, 2015

The Sparrow Sisters
by Ellen Herrick

  • Publication Date: September 1, 2015
  • Genres: Fantasy, Fiction
  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks
  • ISBN-10: 0062386344
  • ISBN-13: 9780062386342