Lois Duncan (Steinmetz Arquette)

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Kirkus Reviews

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Last Updated on June 7, 2022, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 168

Long before she suspects orphaned cousin Julia of being a ringer, Rae [protagonist of Summer of Fear] is convinced that the new member of the family is a witch—and when the awkward Ozarks teenager promptly turns into a femme fatale to steal Rae's best dress and best boyfriend, all the while making eyes at Rae's dad, she shows herself to be the kind of villainess who'd make any red-blooded girl spitting mad. Rae finds evidence of supernatural doings—a wax doll, a mutilated photograph, the smell of sulphur … even the body of the family dog, felled by Julia's curse. But Duncan doesn't rely overmuch on conventional props; her speciality is high-gloss malice and murder (I Know What You Did Last Summer …) and Rae, isolated as much by her uncontrollable jealousy as by Julia's plotting, might just convince even those who swore they'd never taste another witch's brew recipe.

A review of "Summer of Fear," in Kirkus Reviews (copyright © 1976 The Kirkus Service, Inc.), Vol. XLIV, No. 12, June 15, 1976, p. 691.

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