Conversion, by Katherine Howe Publication: July 1, 2014, by G.P. Putnam’s Sons BFYR Genre: Young Adult Fiction, Contemporary, Mystery Pages: 402 Format: Hardcover Source: Borrowed Rating:
It’s senior year at St. Joan’s Academy, and school is a pressure cooker. College applications, the battle for valedictorian, deciphering boys’ texts: Through it all, Colleen Rowley and her friends are expected to keep it together. Until they can’t.
First it’s the school’s queen bee, Clara Rutherford, who suddenly falls into uncontrollable tics in the middle of class. Her mystery illness quickly spreads to her closest clique of friends, then more students and symptoms follow: seizures, hair loss, violent coughing fits. St. Joan’s buzzes with rumor; rumor blossoms into full-blown panic.
Soon the media descends on Danvers, Massachusetts, as everyone scrambles to find something, or someone, to blame. Pollution? Stress? Or are the girls faking? Only Colleen—who’s been reading The Crucible for extra credit—comes to realize what nobody else has: Danvers was once Salem Village, where another group of girls suffered from a similarly bizarre epidemic three centuries ago . . .
Inspired by true events—from seventeenth-century colonial life to the halls of a modern-day high school—Conversion casts a spell. With her signature wit and passion, New York Times bestselling author Katherine Howe delivers an exciting and suspenseful novel, a chilling mystery that raises the question, what’s really happening to the girls at St. Joan’s?
Conversion, despite all of the expectations I’ve ever had, turned out to be mind-racing. It’s a novel I’ve been meaning to read for ages, but I never had gotten the chance to head out and borrow/buy it, but now when I have read it and given it an honest rating based out of my opinion, I’m so glad that I gave it the change right at this instant. Not two months ago, not in another year. Today, this experience, was better, the most greatest.
Witchcraft? Ivy League? Freaking prestigious schools? That’s something I’m into. And if you have or haven’t been informed by the Salem witch trials before, this will be a new experience for you, alongside an epidemic that is mysterious and may or may not have the name “PANDAS.” Not those white and black furry animals who eat bamboo. It’s an illness that picks on random girls that seems to do crazy stuff, like making people bald or having some choke up metal. It’s a legit thing. And if you read the Author’s Note and where this came from… You’ll find yourself so inspired.
NOT INSPIRED TO DO MAGIC, IS NOT WHAT I’M SAYING. You’ll find yourself so enchanted by the story that you’ll have no other route but then to not be allured by it. Although Howe’s tale is quite difficult to get into at first, especially with dealing with two complete different perspectives told in different places, you’ll adore it eventually. I’m also quite excited to pick up Howe’s future works and read a whole new story, because hey—standalones are pretty awesome, too.
St. Joan’s Academy is prestigious, and a lot of young women find themselves getting accepted to any university they wish to attend. For Colleen, being the best at everything is all that matters, and she wishes to get into Harvard or Dartmouth. When some of her classmates fall dangerously ill randomly (and at the worst time), she strives to figure out what’s behind it all, because an illness that had absurd symptoms cannot just appear out of the ordinary. Does magic have to do with it?
Of course I’m not going to spoil the whole story for you, but I’ll tell you this: You won’t forget it. It’s pretty difficult to forget about a book that stood beyond the expectations, and beyond the ordinary. Howe’s writing is interesting, exciting and racing, my heart felt like it was going to explode at times. Flipping between contemporary and historical times with two main characters who basically saved and ruined the day, I’m sure there’s something to love in every single bit of the story. Katherine Howe isn’t your average storyteller: She’s a magnificent writer whose stories you’ll never want to get out of you.
Colleen, the contemporary setting protagonist, is a fighter. She reminds me tons of myself, with that overachieving attitude but someone who obviously has a good heart (not that I’m bragging, heh) but it was good to read about someone who you could relate to. She has so many issues in life and they keep piling up onto each other, as everyone periodically feels their lives become, and things can literally go upside down for them when they wouldn’t really like it to. She was the main highlight of the story. And there wasn’t too many hints of romance, either. It was like a ghost story that focuses more on the spooky aspect of things.
Conversion will literally convert you into (A) a literary buff, if you already aren’t one and/or (B) someone willing to read anything by this author over and over again. It have a few cons as for story development and the way the story turned out in the end as well as the beginning part, but I’m sitting here with tons of compliments towards it. You’ll really love this, if you haven’t read it already. Pick it up, it’s already waiting for you to devour and enjoy it!
how much patience are you willing to give for a book? are you easy-going with boring plots or are you a tough bud like i am? do books usually surprise you with suspense and a rapid change of movement in the plot?