The Rooks Family moves to Litchfield, NH, a remote town in which they hope to escape the trauma that their daughter Sailor has experienced recently. They live in a secluded home, in which the father Charlie can work on his best selling children’s books, while the mother who is in a wheelchair works as a nurse at a nearby hospital. We find out early that Sailor had been terrorized by a bully at their previous town, and while out in the woods, the girl threatening Sailor was grabbed and dragged into a tree by monstrous hands. As the story sounds unbelievable, some people assume Sailor killed her.
Mysterious people appear and strange situations begin to occur to the family. Sailor ends up in the woods by her new house after a stressful situation at school, and is dragged into the Wytches lair, along with her uncle. When her parents report her missing, a search party looks for her, but the Sheriff doesn’t seem especially concerned. A strange vigilante that had previously hurt the father, helps Charlie obtains clues and weaponry that will help him rescue his daughter from the underground den. While his rescue attempt is successful, all hell breaks loose at home and in the town now that the secret is out. The Wytches come to the surface and secret allegiances are revealed. An epic fight ensues and sacrifices are made, and the story is set up to continue as this will be a series.
The artwork is unique, but I don’t especially mean that in a good way. The layout and illustrations were fine, but the paint splatters that were overlaid on all of the pictures became quite distracting. While this overprint technique was supposed to convey a mind-bending surrealness to the story, it failed. Paint blotches do not equal scariness.
While an intriguing premise this book fell flat for me. The characters were annoying, and there were several contrived scenes. How people become pledged to the coven seemed indiscriminate, and while I hope the Wytches are vanquished, I won’t be sticking around for the final showdown.