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Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Caged Graves by Dianne K. Salerni

17-year-old Verity Boone expects a warm homecoming when she returns to Catawissa, Pennsylvania, in 1867, pledged to marry a man she has never met. Instead, she finds a father she barely knows and a future husband with whom she apparently has nothing in common. One truly horrifying surprise awaits her: the graves of her mother and aunt are enclosed in iron cages outside the local cemetery. Nobody in town will explain why, but Verity hears rumors of buried treasure and witchcraft. Perhaps the cages were built to keep grave robbers out . . . or to keep the women in. Determined to understand, Verity finds herself in a life-and-death struggle with people she trusted.

I have such a fascination with graveyards, so it was with a happy heart I picked up Caged Graves. I was not disappointed.

This book blended history and fiction quite well. The author wrote the whole story based solely upon some actual graves she found. She wove mystery around these graves and her fictional characters and town until you couldn’t help but be wrapped up in all of their story lines.

I went into this thinking it would have a supernatural twist and was really happy that in the end it was a good ole fashioned mystery! I am not usually into historical fiction, but I really enjoyed this book!

The main character, Verity, kind of got on my nerves a few times and they had an almost love triangle, which bothered me, hence only a four star review. But both the love triangle and Verity had plot twists that made me enjoy them.

Each character had their own personality and back story, allowing me to enjoy their interactions and feel empathy for their lives. The writing was really good and I couldn’t put the book down. Once again, you could tell the author did her research. Was it all historically accurate? Of course not, historical fiction rarely is, but it was good enough that I didn’t question much.

I have often wondered about old graves and the people who were buried in them and what their family was like, how they died, how they lived…This author has done something I love and managed to market it so it isn’t sick, but very interesting and a little creepy!

If you like mystery, old graves and historical fiction, mainly historical fiction that takes place in East Coast America circa late 1800’s then I would recommend picking this book up. There isn’t a lot of flash and bang, but it has a ton of heart.

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