by Sonja Condit
This stylish debut novel from Condit employs a supernatural horror element that drives the main conflict. Lacey Miszlak, a pregnant fourth-grade schoolteacher, and her husband, Eric, a divorce attorney at his uncle's law firm, are searching for their dream "starter house" in Greeneburg, a fictitious city in South Carolina. Lacey falls in love with a Cape Cod being fixed up for sale by a man who lives next door, Harry Rakoczy, who cuts the Miszlaks a good deal. After the Miszlaks move in, Lacey collides with a rambunctious nine-year-old boy riding his bicycle; he introduces himself as Drew. After Lacey's doctor puts her on bed rest, Eric summons her mother, Ella Dane Kendall, a freewheeling herbalist, to help. Lacey makes the perturbing discovery that she lives in what the locals call the "murder house" that "eats babies," while also beginning to suspect that Drew, whom she has befriended, is a ghost. Meanwhile, Eric represents Lex Hall, whose wife Jeanne is divorcing him and taking their one-year-old daughter, Theo. Lacey's fears over her and Eric's safety escalate when Drew's destructive force damages the upstairs. She learns the truth from Drew about what happened where she lives before her baby is born there. Eric connects Lex to the troubled house and Drew, before Condit's entertaining debut novel shifts into high gear for the violent showdown.
Copyright 2013 PWxyz LLC