Customer Reviews for

The Spiritualist

Average Rating 4
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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 1, 2008

    A reviewer

    On a cold night in January of 1957, at her husband Peter¿s request, a highly sceptical Evelyn Atherton reluctantly attends a séance with him. Peter¿s interest in spirit circles was born from the need to reach out to his dead mother. Evie wanted no part of the new craze where society¿s elite paid great sums of money to commune with the dead through self-proclaimed mediums, or swindlers. Having been married for only three years, Evelyn had become unsettled over her husband¿s apathy towards her. Was it because he married her even though she was far below his station? During the séance, a gunshot resounds which barely missed Peter. Afterwards, Peter, departs in search of answers. Several days pass. Evie does not hear from Peter and she begins to worry. When Peter is found murdered, she learns that not only society, but her in-laws turn on her. Her world takes on a nightmarish quality. Because she is of the lower classes, and because her marriage catapults her into the highest echelons of society, she becomes the primary suspect in his murder. At the reading of the will, Evie learns Peter has left everything to her and has excluded his entire family. This, coupled with the knowledge of her estranged and dwindling relationship with her husband, convinces the police and his family she is responsible for his murder and is arrested. Shunned by society, no one comes to her aid. To make matters worse, her entire inheritance is frozen pending trial. With no means, Evie struggles to find an attorney who will take her case. Peter¿s law partner, Ben, comes to her aid and readily accepts the case. Dorothy Bennett, the wealthy socialite who arranged the ill-fated spirit circle posts bail and invites Evie to reside with her in the belief that the spiritualist who lives with her, Michael Jourdain, can contact Peter's spirit and learn the identity of the true murderer. Convinced Michael is a fake, Evie comes to believe he is responsible for her husband¿s demise. Only by living under the same roof with can she find her husband¿s true murderer and prove her innocence. Soon after her arrival, Peter begins to appear in her nightmares and in visions. Each time, he warns her not to trust a man close to her. Evelyn is soon troubled by Michael Jourdain, whom she finds both intriguing and abhorrent. Confused by her burgeoning feelings, matters go from bad to worse when other members of the spiritualist community realize she is a true medium herself. As time runs out and the time for trial nears, Evie finds herself trapped amidst duplicity, suspicion, charlatans, murderers, and lies. She must unravel the web of mystery and deceit soon, lest her own sanity be at risk and she succumbs to madness like her mother before her. Megan Chance has successfully recreated the time and feel of old New York. In this delicious novel, she serves up a tale of desperation and despair while maintaining historical accuracy to accurately depict societal norms and beliefs and the desperation of the living to maintain contact with loved ones who have passed. This mystery novel has many twists and turns to keep readers enthralled to the very shocking, but satisfying end. [[ASIN:0978486528 Bloodstone Castle]]

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 17, 2008

    A reviewer

    Megan Chance delves into the world of mediums into her newest novel, The Spiritualist. When Evelyn, the daughter of an investigator weds Peter Atherton, she marries up into posh 19th century New York¿s ¿upper ten¿ - the top families of the city. Her struggles to fit society¿s expectations of a successful lawyer's wife are made more difficult by her husband¿s reluctance to treat their marriage as anything more than a comfortable arrangement in fact, his proposal is phrased as ¿doing him a favor.¿ Despite the strain, Evelyn attempts to embrace Peter¿s world, including his arrogant family and his apparent interest in spiritualism. She attends a spirit circle led by Michel Jourdain and quickly judges him a charlatan bent on duping her husband and the society widow, Dorothy Bennett. But Evelyn is forced into a deeper understanding of Michel¿s world when Peter is later found murdered and she stands accused of the act. Peter¿s family and friends ruthlessly turn against her, all except for Mrs. Bennett and Peter¿s law partner Benjamin Rampling. He boldly steps in to help clear Evelyn¿s name. But almost everyone in Evelyn¿s acquaintance is hiding secrets from the past that hold the key to her future. She must rely on help from unexpected sources to avoid the hangman¿s noose. The Spiritualist is an engaging story, with memorable characters each fleshed out in full to give the reader a great perspective. Michel Jourdain is striking yet reveals unexpected facets of his personality. Peter Atherton is tragic and tortured, yet he shows a surprising inner strength. Evelyn, who struggles so hard to become what she is not, learns that her destiny is in her own hands. Ms. Chance effortlessly portrays New York society at its worst and best of the period and makes it easy for the reader to dive into that world. There¿s a temptation to race to the ending of the story but the journey with the characters holds the reader¿s interest. With unexpected twists and a startling conclusion, Ms. Chance has written a beautiful novel. I highly recommend it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 15, 2011

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    Posted June 26, 2011

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    Posted August 26, 2010

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    Posted January 23, 2009

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    Posted November 21, 2008

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    Posted October 23, 2010

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