“It Takes a Coven” by Carol J. Perry


By Carol J. Perry

The seventh in the Witch City Mystery series has an attention-grabbing opening. And made me hungry for more. Who could resist reading that the protagonist, Lee Barrett, hears about the sudden death of Megan, one of her dearest friends, while doing a tasting to choose a cake for one of her former student’s weddings? Almond cake with vanilla cream filling? A mysterious death? Count me in. Megan was a practicing witch in Salem, the Massachusetts town famous for witches, and loved by all. Her sudden death is a very big deal.

The plot thickens when Lee, trying to fulfill her maid of honor duties, learns that the best man is a recently released felon, and the ring bearer for this very unusual wedding is a talking crow named Poe. Speaking of crows, suddenly Salem is filled with them, annoying and even frightening the locals. And two more witches are found dead.

Lee knows a little more about this than most people. No, she’s not one herself, but her best friend, River North, is. River believes all three deaths, plus the crow invasion, are her fault because she’s in possession of a dangerous spell book owned by Bridget Bishop, the first woman to be executed for witchcraft in Salem in the seventeenth century. Bridget wants her spell book back, and there’s no fury like a dead witch’s fury. Because Lee is a scryer, a person who can see things in reflective surfaces that others can’t, Bridget keeps popping up to issue a variety of threats that would scare anybody.

With the able assistance of her cat, O’Ryan, and Aunt Ibby, Lee and River join forces to solve the murders and return the book to its rightful owner.

“It Takes A Coven” is a fast-paced whodunit that entertains from start to finish. Of particular interest is the fact that Bridget Bishop is a true historical person. And, who knows? Maybe she continues to haunt the city of Salem.

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