Sunday, September 13, 2015
RIP X: 2, The Uninvited
My second RIP read of the year was the new release The Uninvited by Cat Winters. I got a review copy before it came out in August but I just couldn't resist saving it until time for the challenge.
Set during WWI and the influenza epidemic of 1918, Winters takes us to Buchanan, Illinois, former welcoming home of European immigrants but now a place of illness and suspicion. Ivy Rowan, a twenty-five year old "spinster" has just recovered from the flu and word has recently arrived that her brother Billy was killed in the war. The reaction of her father and other brother? Murder. This prompts Ivy to leave the home that she had been stuck in for years but what she finds in town might just be as horrible.
There are so many surprises and twists in this story that I don't want to say much more. I was annoyed by Ivy for a good chunk of the book but then, as I got to know her, I forgave more of her foibles. What was more interesting to me though (but also horrifying, especially when reading it in the context of current events) was the treatment of the German, Polish, and even Swedish citizens of this small town. Street and business names were changed, music and language were treated suspiciously, and, eventually, almost everyone who was different was either killed, arrested, or driven out of town. This was brutal to read about and almost as terrifying as the spooks. This was a fantastic historical fiction and a fairly good ghost story.
Trying to learn from the past,