A man investigates rumors of the supernatural in post-Civil War Vermont in a “stunningly twisted tale mired in history from a master of the macabre” (Booklist).
Nine years have passed since the end of the American Civil War, and Silas Flood, helpless to escape its shadow, is a broken man in a broken country. In the summer of 1874, he is dispatched to the mountain village of Moriah, Vermont, to investigate sensational claims of supernatural happenings at a wayside inn. There, the brothers Thaddeus and Ambrose Lynch are said to converse with spirits and summon the dead.
In Moriah, Flood encounters others like himself: a grieving couple, a childless widow. By day he questions the Lynch brothers, who prove less than forthcoming. They too are haunted by buried secrets and old ghosts. In the evenings he attends séances where the resurrected dead dance, sing, and give comfort to the living. As Flood investigates the true nature of these phenomena, he is forced to come to terms with his own past—and with the hold it has upon him.
“Mills deftly jumps between narratives as the story unfolds, his prose saturating every page with dread as he teases out his characters’ secrets and lies. [An] intense novel.” —Publishers Weekly