May 2012 Indie Next List
“This year is the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic. This novel follows Bostonian Sibyl Allston and her attempts to contact her deceased mother and sister through seances and spiritualists. Both family members had perished aboard the fated ocean liner. Sibyl's emotional journey is touching and magical, and there are surprises along the way that will astound you!”
— Mary Toni, R.J. Julia Booksellers, Madison, CT
Katherine Howe, author of the phenomenal New York Times bestseller The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane, returns with an entrancing historical novel set in Boston in 1915, where a young woman stands on the cusp of a new century, torn between loss and love, driven to seek answers in the depths of a crystal ball. Still reeling from the deaths of her mother and sister on the Titanic, Sibyl Allston is living a life of quiet desperation with her taciturn father and scandal-plagued brother in an elegant town house in Boston's Back Bay. Trapped in a world over which she has no control, Sybil flees for solace to the parlor of a table-turning medium. But when her brother is suddenly kicked out of Harvard under mysterious circumstances and falls under the sway of a strange young woman, Sibyl turns for help to psychology professor Benton Jones, despite the unspoken tensions of their shared past. As Benton and Sibyl work together to solve a harrowing mystery, their long-simmering spark flares to life, and they realize that there may be something even more magical between them than a medium's scrying glass. From the opium dens of Boston's Chinatown to the opulent salons of high society, from the back alleys of colonial Shanghai to the decks of the Titanic, The House of Velvet and Glass weaves together meticulous period detail, intoxicating romance, and a final shocking twist in a breathtaking novel that will thrill readers. Bonus features in the eBook: Katherine Howe's essay on scrying; Boston Daily Globe article on the Titanic from April 15, 1912; and a Reading Group Guide and Q&A with the author, Katherine Howe.
About the Author
Katherine Howe got her Ph.D. in American and New England Studies at Boston University. She is author of one previous novel, The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane. She lives in Ithaca, NY, with her husband.