cover image The Hollows

The Hollows

Jess Montgomery. Minotaur, $27.99 (352p) ISBN 978-1-250-18454-2

Set in the fall of 1926 in Bronwyn County, Ohio, Montgomery’s intricate, atmospheric sequel to 2019’s The Widows finds Sheriff Lily Ross called to investigate the death of an elderly woman who fell from the top of the Moonvale Hollow tunnel into the path of an oncoming train. Was it an accident, or was she pushed onto the tracks by a ghostly figure in white, as the brakeman insists? Lily learns that the victim, Thea Kincaide, was an escaped inmate from the Hollows Asylum for the Insane and a long-lost cousin to her best friend, jail mistress Hildy Cooper, who sometimes looks after Lily’s two young children. In retracing Thea’s path from the asylum to the site of her death, Lily discovers disturbing evidence that an evil spirit from the past is trying to rise again. Realistic characters complement a great sense of place. Montgomery does an admirable job of portraying brave women such as Lily who must become the support of their families in the face of their own grief after their husbands’ deaths. Agent: Elisabeth Weed, Book Group. (Jan.)