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Reviewed by Jose Cornelio for Readers' Favorite
Chapter Thirteen: A Novel by Maria A. Palace is a twisty, enthralling paranormal thriller that has the potential to keep any reader on the edge of their seat. Katy Barton is a beautiful young reporter who moves back to her hometown of Morganville, Pennsylvania after six years of college in New York. Working for a local newspaper, she must get an interview with a recluse, an elderly woman who lives in an old building about to be demolished. When she meets Evelyn, the eccentric old woman, she is troubled to discover a picture of a younger version of the old woman, a picture that looks an awful lot like Katy’s graduation picture. Her curiosity pushes her to dig deeper into the mystery about the old woman and as Katy unearths layer after layer of who the old woman is, she becomes more uncertain about herself. Falling in love provides a fleeting moment of respite but can it soothe her troubled mind and can even hypnotherapy save her from a future she dreads?
Maria A. Palace’s Chapter Thirteen is a delightful story with strong plot lines, elaborately developed characters, and a mystery that is spellbinding. The story is character-driven and I adored the way the author writes Katy; she is beautiful, smart, and driven, but she is tortured internally by a tragedy that happened in her past. Knowing Evelyn is an experience with strong emotions and the author writes mystery and suspense into the relationship between the two characters. It seems like Katy is the younger version of Evelyn, but can Katy bear to think that Evelyn is her older version? What does the future hold for her? There are unexpected twists, an emotionally engaging romance, and an internal conflict that is arresting. Maria A. Palace understands what a good story is and she delivers it to readers with style.