Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Dark Shadows: The Salem Branch-Lara Parker

Dark Shadows: The Salem Branch

Lara Parker

Tor, Apr 10 2012, $14.99

ISBN: 9780765332608

In 1971 Collinsport, the vampire Barnabas Collins has been changed into a mortal thanks to the medical elixir Dr. Julia Hoffman created. Although he asked Julia to marry him and she accepted his proposal, Barnabas is curiously reluctant to tell the family. He finds his newfound humanity a weakness and regrets losing the intensity he felt as a vampire. The Old House has been sold to flower child Antoinette, who bears a striking resemblance to Angelique, the woman who made him a vampire.

Barnabas tries to woo Antoinette but she is more interested in his cousin Quentin then him. He follows her to a séance in Salem where they are thrust back to 1692. Miranda Duval has been accused of witchcraft and will be judged by those who want her land and her farmhouse. Both Antoinette and Barnabas try in different ways to save Miranda who is Antoinette’s troubled daughter in 1971. Barnabas also must track down the vampire that has entered Collinwood and has killed at least one person but he has no idea who that person is and his own humanity limits what he can do.

This is a reprint of a 2006 tale, as Lara Parker, the actress who played Angelique on the first Dark Shadows television show, has written another chapter in the Collins saga. While one subplot takes place in 1971, much of the tale takes place in Salem at the height of the witch trials where another branch of the Collins family has settled and plays an important role in the fate of Miranda. Fans of the series will love reading about characters that they enjoyed watching three decades ago as the author captures their essence.

Harriet Klausner

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