Jericho

Alex Gordon. Harper Voyager, $14.99 trade paper (464p) ISBN 978-0-06-168738-9

In Gordon's superb follow-up to 2015's Gideon, Lauren Mullin is coming to terms with her powers as a witch and as a Child of Endor. Her role is to guard the "thin places" such as Gideon, Ill., that separate the living and the dead. But Gideon's residents are leaving, and without support from the other Children of Endor, she fears for the town's future. When the enigmatic Gene Kaster approaches Lauren with an offer to head to Carmody Peak, the Oregon woodland retreat of the wealthy Andrew Carmody, and meet others on the council, she hopes for a relaxing few days and a chance to ask for the council's help, but instead she gets more trouble. Andrew wants Lauren to help his unhappy, powerful teenage daughter, Nyssa. The nearby ghost town of Jericho is a nexus for strange happenings, and something diabolically evil is lurking there, hungering for Nyssa. Lauren promises to protect the girl with her life. This gripping contemporary witch tale is a heady brew with an atmospheric, fully realized setting and genuinely creepy chills. Agent: Jennifer Jackson, Donald Maass Literary. (Apr.)
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