Putnam, Apr 2008, $25.95
In 1891 siblings Leonie and Anatole Vernier leave Paris to visit their Tante Isolde at her Domain de la Cade estate in the mountainous south France. At her widow aunt’s place, Leonie overhears the villagers’ whispers of the devil’s abode and finds an interesting journal in which her late uncle studied the occult and mentions a special tarot card deck and a Visigoth tomb. Fascinated the teen searches for both while unknown to her someone wants to kill her and her loved ones while she begins to worriedly wonder why her Tante invited them.
In 2008 biographer Meredith Martin seeks to complete her latest book on renowned French composer Debussy when she finds a replica of the tarot cards that Leonie sought. What is frightening is that some of the cards contain pictures that eerily look like her. She makes inquiries which lead her to Domain de la Cade converted to a hotel; yet like over a century ago hosts a battle between the forces of good and evil.
Although too many passive sidebar discussions slow down the overall plot, fans will enjoy this interesting horror thriller as the good vs. evil war occurs twice due to the linking tarot cards. Readers will feel the changes in outlook of the lead females of each era as they start off with youthful enthusiastic curiosity that changes to outright fear; their identical reactions make for a fine but cluttered thriller.