I decided to read this after reading and loving the author's The Secret of Saturday Cove.Though "Saturday Cove" appears to be less well-known than "Witch's Bridge", I actually enjoyed it more and would encourage anyone who liked "Witch's Bridge" to give it a try.Even though "Saturday Cove" is not a spooky book, the sense of adventure and mystery is even more palpable, IMO, and I liked the characters better overall, too.It would make an especially good summer read.

Now, on to "Witch's Bridge" —

Even though it takes place during the summer, the spooky atmosphere of the marshes, the storms and the thick fogs that roll in, as well as the supposed curse and haunting make it suitable for a Halloween read.The witch is not quite what I expected, but in a way is far more disturbing than the sort that fly around on broomsticks and haunt most of children's witchy literature: he is the ancestor of our protagonist, a man who was tried and condemned for witchcraft in Puritan times and who supposedly left a curse, and whose fiddle can still be heard on especially foggy nights.Our hero's family is haunted, not by the witch himself, but by the terrible legacy of the curse and how it has made everyone in the town suspicious of them.That the prejudice which condemned a man to death hundreds of years ago could still be so rampant in the town (though not to such extreme extent) is, to me, the most chilling aspect of the book.But there's still plenty of more traditionally scary features if you like that sort of thing.

One thing I really like about both of Carleton's books is her likeable heroes, boys on the cusp of manhood who experience myriad emotions and who find courage to act for themselves when adults don't take them seriously.I do feel that her "bad guys" get off a little easy, that Carleton is too forgiving — which I guess maybe shouldn't really be seen as a flaw (and it's nice that they are seen as three-dimensional and damaged souls and not just 100% villains) but, gosh, the antagonist here did some pretty nasty things and I felt he got off much too easy.And sometimes I want her protaginists to speak up for themselves a bit more than they do.But other than that, I really enjoyed this book and the chapter "Lamie" was worth the whole book for me—I absolutely loved his character.