West Hall, Vermont 1908. Sara Harrison Shea is found dead in the field behind her house just months after the tragic death of her daughter. She has been acted weirdly since then and her death is horrifying.
In the present day is nineteen-year-old Ruthie living in Sara's old farmhouse with her mother Alice and her younger sister. They have always lived a very simple life, farming what they need staying away from the modern world as much as possible. When Alice comes home late one night can she see that the little farmhouse is lit and that her mother is probably waiting for her. But, when she comes in she notices that the even though the kitchen is lit, her mother isn't there. Thinking that her mother has gone to bed she shrugs it off and goes to sleep in her room. But, the next day her little sister wakes her up and tells her that mom isn't in the bedroom. They search for clues in the house to find out what has happened to their mother and it is during the search that they discover a paperback version of Sara Harrison Shea diary...
Have you ever read a book that sucks you into the story from page one? The Winter people did that to me. I just couldn't stop reading the book. Both the present and the past story was both very interesting and I loved how the mystery slowly unraveled itself. It's not really a terrifying book, but it's engrossing and I found myself totally drawn into the mystery of Alice's disappearance and what it had to do with Sara Harrison Shea.
I also completely loved the paranormal part of the book, the legend that you can wake up a loved one from the dead and how that legend plays a part in this story. Ruthie is a wonderful character, and as much as I enjoyed reading the past story with Sara was I a bit more interested in Ruthie's search for her mother. But, I guess that's because there is so much going on in the present, things that she learns about herself in the search, why they live as they do and also because in the present we learn the consequence of the past events in 1908. The book is great, one of the best I have read this year. It's a perfect read if you want an interesting story, not too terrifying, more poignant, but still a dark story.