Speaks the Nightbird: A Novel

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Open Road Media, Oct 8, 2013 - Fiction - 812 pages
6 Reviews
Murder sparks a witchcraft charge and mob fury in this “absorbing historical mystery” set in seventeenth-century America from a New York Times–bestselling author (Publishers Weekly).
 
It’s 1699 in the coastal settlement of Fount Royal in the Carolinas when Rachel Howarth is sentenced to be hanged as a witch. She’s been accused of murder, deviltry, and blasphemous sexual congress, and the beleaguered, God-fearing colonial village wants her dead. But Matthew Corbett, young clerk to the traveling magistrate summoned to Fount Royal to weigh the accusations, soon finds himself persuaded in favor of the beguiling young widow.
 
Struck first by her beauty, Matthew believes Rachel to be too dignified, courageous, and intelligent for such obscene charges. The testimony against her is fanatical and unreliable. Clues to the crimes seem too convenient and contrived. A number of her accusers appear to gain by her execution. And, if Rachel is a witch, why hasn’t she used her powers to fly away from the gaol on the wings of a nightbird?
 
God and Satan are indeed at war. Something really is happening in the newly established settlement—of that Corbett is certain. As his investigation draws him into the darkness of a town gone mad, and deeper into its many secrets, Corbett realizes that time is running out for him, for Rachel, and for the hope that good could possibly win out over evil in Fount Royal.
 
From the award-winning author of Boy’s Life and Gone South, Speaks the Nightbird is, in the words of Stephen King, “a rarity in popular fiction, a book that manages to be thoughtful as well as entertaining.”
 
 

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Review: Speaks the Nightbird (Matthew Corbett #1)

User Review  - Andy - Goodreads

The only reason its not a 5 star is the ending is a little contrived for me (reminded me alot of The Terror by Dan Simmons). But the build up is excellent. The atmosphere the author creates really ... Read full review

Review: Speaks the Nightbird (Matthew Corbett #1)

User Review  - Angela - Goodreads

i>A trial for witchcraft proves the tip of an iceberg of intrigues in this absorbing historical mystery, the first newly published novel in 10 years from McCammon (the book was written in the mid-'90s ... Read full review

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About the author (2013)

One of the founders of the Horror Writers Association, Robert R. McCammon (b. 1952) is one of the country’s most accomplished authors of modern horror and historical fiction. Raised by his grandparents in Birmingham, Alabama, McCammon published his first novel, the Revelations-inspired Baal, when he was only twenty-six. His writings continued in a supernatural vein throughout the 1980s, producing such bestselling titles as Swan Song, The Wolf’s Hour, and Stinger

In 1991 Boy’s Life won the World Fantasy Award for best novel. After his next novel, Gone South, McCammon took a break from writing to spend more time with his family. He did not publish another novel until 2002’s Speaks the Nightbird. Since then he has followed “fixer” Matthew Corbett in two sequels, The Queen of Bedlam and Mister Slaughter. His newest novel is The Five. McCammon and his family continue to live in Birmingham.

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