The Catalain Book of Secrets by Jessica Lourey

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The novel is tightly plotted, and Lourey shines when depicting relationships—romantic ones as well as tangled links between Catalains...Ursula and Katrine are especially distinctive. Pulpy in places but sweet and sassy enough (à la Gilmore Girls) to attract magic-light teen or women’s fiction fans.
-Kirkus

Synopsis

“The Catalain Book of Secrets opens with a bang and keeps on firing off the unexpected. Think Charles deLint or Alice Hoffman…spell-binding.” –Midwest Book Review

"Exquisitely written in naturally flowing, expressive language, the book delves into the special relationships between sisters, and mothers and daughters." --Publishers Weekly

Faith Falls is a snug little Minnesota town constructed over a mystery, a place where the most impressive building is a gorgeous Queen Anne with turrets, cantilevered gables, and a wraparound porch. In a concealed room beneath the twisting stairs of the Queen Anne lies the Catalain Book of Secrets, the repository of the wisdom the Catalain women have gathered since the beginning of time.

Ursula Catalain, current keeper of the Book of Secrets, is content to concoct spells in her garden cottage until the ghost of the man she murdered when she was 12 appears at her door in a new form. His return pulls Jasmine, Ursula's daughter, back into the fold. Once believed to be the most powerful of the Catalains, she foreswore her gift years before to bury a shameful secret. The ghost of the murdered man also calls home Katrine, Jasmine's sister, who has been banished for fourteen years. Finally able to return to Faith Falls and the beloved Queen Anne, Katrine must claim her true Catalain power to save her mother and sister from the dark family curse.

Told in a majestic mosaic of strong women’s voices, The Catalain Book of Secrets weaves together alchemy, hope, tragedy, and true love to spin a tale in the style of Garden Spells, Eva Luna, and Practical Magic.
 

About Jessica Lourey

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Jessica (Jess) Lourey is best known for her critically-acclaimed Murder-by-Month mysteries, which have earned multiple starred reviews from Library Journal and Booklist, the latter writing, her books are "a splendid mix of humor and suspense." Jessica also writes sword and sorcery fantasy as Albert Lea, edge-of-your-seat YA adventure as J.H. Lourey, and general fiction under her given name.She is a tenured professor of creative writing and sociology at a Minnesota college. When not teaching, reading, traveling, writing, or raising her two wonderful kids, you can find her dreaming big, playing with her dorky dog, or watching craptastic SyFy original movies. Visit her website at www.jessicalourey.com or her Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/jess.lourey. All are welcome!
 
Published December 12, 2014 by Toadhouse Books. 354 pages
Genres: Science Fiction & Fantasy, Literature & Fiction, Romance. Fiction
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Critic reviews for The Catalain Book of Secrets
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Kirkus

Above average
on Oct 09 2014

The novel is tightly plotted, and Lourey shines when depicting relationships—romantic ones as well as tangled links between Catalains...Ursula and Katrine are especially distinctive. Pulpy in places but sweet and sassy enough (à la Gilmore Girls) to attract magic-light teen or women’s fiction fans.

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