With This Curse


GOTHIC ROMANCE:  Clara has both loved and feared Gravesend Manor since first arriving as a child.  It is beautiful but it’s curse permeates all who live within its walls.  That curse first strikes Clara at the age of 17 when a misunderstanding leaves her banished and left to fend for herself.  It follows through by killing Richard, the younger son of its Lord and love of Clara’s life.  


Eighteen years later, Clara has managed to eke out a decent existence as a theatre seamstress when Gravesend’s heir finds her and proposes marriage.  He states his reasons as trying to make up for the horrible injustice done to Clara, as well as his need to be married when his ailing father dies.  A plan is presented that will provide for her upon the old Lords death but will the curse somehow destroy that which she holds dear a second time?


In this gothic mystery/romance, Ms. DeWees has woven her words with such beauty as to almost seem poetic at times.  The characters are developed with a depth and understanding that allows readers to become a part of the very story themselves.  This weaving in so realistically is also what sets off the singular oddity in the book, that of Clara’s unrealistic blindness and naive devotion to a love eighteen years dead, even after her life has taught her the harsh realities of men. It just doesn’t succeed in believability against the wonderfully drawn character of Atticus.  The plot is a delight to uncover, although the villain is soon very plain to the reader.  Overall, it is a feast for the eye and a joy to devour!

Ruth Lynn Ritter