Staff Review: "Enchantment Lake"
Seventeen-year-old Francie bolts from an audition and hops on a plane from New York City to Minnesota after receiving a troubling call from her great aunts Astrid and Jeannette. She hasn’t visited her aunts’ home in northern Minnesota since her father’s death seven years prior, but she has fond childhood memories of Enchantment Lake. However, she cannot shake the uneasiness triggered by her aunts’ call and their subsequent clarification. It seems that the mortality rate of long-time residents in the area is unusually high and is attributed to a number of unusual “accidents” that seem not so accidental. There’s pressure on the locals to add a road to the north side of the lake but many do not view a new road as progress. Her aunts’ property includes segments critical for a new road. Could they be the next targets? I was charmed by this mystery, which is thoroughly grounded in its Northwoods setting—hot dish anyone?—and captures the beauty of the area, whether the bog, the woods, or the lake, and the potential menace cloaked by the darkness of night. The stakes are high with potentially deadly consequences, but, like its heroine and her incorrigible aunts, it has a sense of humor too. Recommended for fans of Nancy Drew, cozy mysteries, and/or of books that celebrate the upper Midwest.