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  • A Delightful Halloween Treat

    I love the Autumn season with all the fun holidays that includes ALL the upcoming wonderful Halloween stories for the treat for readers. Carolyn Haines delivers a very early Halloween treat with the "Bewitching Familiar", a 1995 re-issue book published this year. This is a brand new read to the Familiar detective series for this reviewer. This storyline features Trouble the Black Cat Detective's father, Familiar, as the Sherlockian feline and his two humans that is a great introduction to the Familiar/Trouble black cat mystery series. The story begins in 1995 with Abigail and Familiar being involved in an auto accident as a result of Samuel's careless driving skills. Samuel and Abigail check on Familiar and somehow they get transported back to 1692, just in time of the infamous Salem Witch Trials in Salem Village, Massachusetts. In 1692, Abigail is a prosperous land owner and farmer with Familiar is her black cat which is unheard of in Puritan America. Samuel is the defense representative for the accused victims of witchcraft. Abigail is under suspicion with several others, such as Brianna March and Hester Prynne, who are accused by Silas Grayson and his evil group of villagers. Abigail, Samuel, and Familiar, along with several others are on the path to find out who turned in these innocent women and men to these trials for their own personal gains. Abigail, Samuel, and Familiar want to get back to 1995 as soon as possible, and yet they remain in Salem Village until the mystery of who is sending Abigail and several others to the hanging gallows is found and brought to justice. This is the first book that I have read from the Familiar, the black cat detective series. Now, I know where Trouble inherited his intelligence and supervisor detecting skills. Ms. Haines created a wonderfully imaginative story and provided outstanding research on the Salem Witch Trials and add her her own personal imaginative twists on a tragic part of American History. This story kept my attention from the first sentence from the 1995 accident to the last word of the book. I love Familiar, the black cat, with his well-thought out theories and plans. He possesses the "knowledge" of what to do to provide aid to his human friends and find necessary clues and evidence that ultimately leads to the culprit(s) who committed these heinous acts. The romance between the two main characters is a very nice touch to the mystery since they are the only two who can understand what is going on in 1692 in their 1995 mindspeak. The author have woven an excellent mystery with actual historical events with some unique and creepy changes along with a dash of romance. As a result, I did some research on this topic after reading about the witch trials to learn some new interesting facts about these events. I love good well-written books that provide interesting facts about the actual historical events that I love to learn about that time period. I gave this book a five star rating that deserves a ten star rating. This is a fabulous read that is very hard to put down once you start reading. If you love books with a Halloween fun twist with a dose of history, this book is for you. I will be reading more of the Familiar cat mystery series in the near future. I was given an ARC for a honest book review.

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