My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Wendy Webb is back with her latest novel set around Lake Superior, The Keepers of Metsan Valo.
Like always with this author’s work, The Keepers Of Metsan Valo is a compelling story about Annaliese or Anni who returns to Metsan Valo, a house named for its forest lights coming to terms with her heritage and the truth about the Vaki or forest spirits guarding the forest. Anni and her twin brother Theo just light up the whole book as they untangle their family legacy. Wendy Webb has used supernatural beings to move this story forward and not ghosts as has been the predominant feature in all her previous works. Characters from previous books also make an appearance like Nick Stone, Gary, and LuAnn. Frankly, just like Anni feeling the warmth of the people in Wharton, the author made me feel the same, you know, like returning back to one of my favorite places in the world.
The touch of romance between Patrick and Anni was surprisingly kept light but it is the family of Hella that is the primary focus of this story. The two sisters Arden and Gloria, Gloria’s daughter and her husband, and the whole dynamics of discontent and jealousy that comes to the fore with the reading of the video will was explored wonderfully.
There’s enough depth to the story with the mysterious incidents happening one after another but what disappointed me was all that build-up finally should have had a resounding finale. In fact, I expected the author to take me in the footsteps of Anni as she faces the spirits instead of the much-watered-down recollection in the morning.
If you are a first-time reader of this author, believe me, this story is going to engross you. The ancient folklore interwoven thru a family whose matriarch has just passed away was remarkable but for a long-time fan like me, who has read all her published books, the Keepers of Metsan Valo just fell below the par.
Many thanks to Net Galley, Lake Union Publishing, and the author for a chance to read and review this book. All opinions are expressed voluntarily.
The spirits of Nordic folklore come calling in this entrancing tale of family secrets and ancient mysteries by the #1 Amazon Charts bestselling author of The Haunting of Brynn Wilder.
In Metsan Valo, her family home on Lake Superior, Anni Halla’s beloved grandmother has died. Among her fond memories, what Anni remembers most vividly is her grandmother’s eerie yet enchanting storytelling. By firelight she spun tall tales of spirits in the nearby forest and waters who could heal—or harm—on a whim. But of course those were only stories…
The reading of the will now occasions a family reunion. Anni and her twin brother, their almost otherworldly mother, and relatives Anni hasn’t seen in forever—some with good reason—are all brought back together under one roof that strains to hold all their tension. But it’s not just Annie’s family who is unsettled. Whispers wind through the woods. Laughter bursts from bubbling streams. Raps from unseen hands rupture on the walls. Fireflies swarm and nightmares stir. With each odd occurrence, Anni fears that her return has invited less a welcoming and more a warning.
When another tragedy strikes near home, Anni must dive headfirst into the mysterious happenings to discover the truth about her home, her family, and the wooded island’s ancient lore. Plunging into the past may be the only way to save her family from whatever bedevils Metsan Valo.
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