Burntown by Jennifer McMahon


Eva grew up watching her father, Miles, invent strange and wonderful things in the small workshop behind their house on the river that runs through their old mill town. But the most important invention of all was the one that Miles claimed came from the mind of Thomas Edison himself–a machine that allowed one to speak with loved ones long passed. Smuggled out of Edison’s laboratory, the blueprints were passed down to Miles, and he’s been using them to protect Eva, her mother, Lily, and her brother, Errol, ever since.
Then, one night when a storm is raging and the river is threatening to flood, the machine whirrs to life on its own. Danger, it says. You’re in terrible danger. The next thing Eva knows is waking up on the side of the river and seeing her mother’s grim face. Eva’s father and brother are dead, their house has been washed away and an evil man is searching for them both. They need to hide.
Eva changes her name to Necco–a candy she always loved–and tries to put everything in her past behind her as she adapts to her new life off the grid. But when her boyfriend is murdered and her mother disappears, she knows that the past is starting to catch up to her.
What really happened the night of the flood? As Necco searches for the truth, her journey unites her with two women who are on desperate quests of their own. And as the trio follows the clues to solving the mystery of Necco’s past, they discover that sometimes it’s the smallest towns that hold the strangest secrets.

Wow!! What a read. I don’t even know how to classify this book. Horror, murder/suspense, supernatural…it’s all in one. I so enjoyed trying to guess what happens next….I was wrong every. single. time!! 

As a young boy, Miles witnesses his mother’s murder.  His father then killed himself after being accused of the crime. Miles grows up, marries, becomes a professor at a college, has a child named Eva and builds a machine.  The machine can talk to dead people. Miles wants to talk to his mother. There is a story which surround this machine. You need to read the book to find out. It is very intriguing!  Then a flood happens and everything changes. 

Eva, or Necco, as she calls herself now, is a homeless, young girl living in an abandoned car. She has lost everyone, her dad and her brother in “the great flood” and her mom to suicide. But, is that what really occurred ? Her life begins to unravel as the knowledge about what happened starts to reveal itself. 

The story created around Eva is very uncommon. From the “great flood” to the homeless, fire-eating women, Eva becomes a strong, tough young girl living on the streets. Then she is accused of murder and everything changes once again. 

I don’t even know how to describe the suspense which runs throughout this book. Jennifer McMahon knows how to calmly build a story then completely change all expectations. Her characters are all completely different, strong and purposeful. This is a unique and non stop read. 

I received this novel from Netgalley for a honest review.  

Purchase here 

Barnes and Noble


About fredreeca

I am an avid reader and paper crafter. I am a mom of 2 children, 5 dogs and 1 cat. I am a huge St. Louis Cardinals Fan
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1 Response to Burntown by Jennifer McMahon

  1. macjam47 says:

    Sounds as though this could be your best read of the summer.

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