Though his mother named him after a priest, there's nothing saintly about McGauran O'Dowd. He needs to escape the slums before he's forced into marrying his friend’s sister and revealing the sin he's managed to hide so far.
When McGauran gets hired as a logger by ruthless business man Gédéon Latendresse, people warn him --the Latendresse family is cursed. Twenty years ago, Gédéon rode the witchin' canoe from the camps to the city to stop his brother's wedding. But that night, Gédéon broke one of the Chasse Galerie rules, and now the Devil's come for his due.
And that due, McGauran soon finds out, is Gédéon's sheltered young nephew Honoré, the most enchanting man McGauran’s ever met. The lover he's been praying for.
Cursed, Honoré is slipping into madness and threatened to be interned. When the winter comes, McGauran is stuck at the shanties, helpless to save Honoré from his tragic fate. He’ll do anything to save the man he loves, even bargain with the Devil himself.
Mel Bossa can write her ass off, and The Witchin' Canoe was another example of her fine work. Though i wish some things were different, it was a lovely, atmospheric story that you'll remember for a long time.
I really, really wish this story was a regular historical romance with a Gothic flair instead of a supernatural romance. The beginning of the story was incredibly lovely, and the romance really sang. I love an opposites attract story, and the tension between the two MCs was palpable. I think there was enough there to make a complete story without the twists and turns at the end.
I loved most of the story so much, and I really enjoyed Mel Bossa's skillful and powerful writing. I got a great sense of the whole setting of the story, and I felt transported to that gloomy and somewhat hopeless time.
However, I didn't love the ending. There were too many POV (we didn't need the butler's), and the Witchin' Canoe lore felt convoluted. I never really understood it, and I thought it detracted from the romance, something I don't often say because I love sci-fi and paranormal romances. There was also so much drama at the end that it felt like the story lost some momentum.
Still, my take away is that of a lovely story about two special characters, and I think all Mel Bossa fans should try this one.
*Copy provided in exchange for an honest review*
Enjoy, my friends!