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I was talking with my husband after I finished reading THE WINTER SEA by Susanna Kearsley; after I summed up the plot (and told him how much it reminded me of ISOBEL), he laughed and asked, “Gosh, what part of the collective unconscious did you tap into?”

It got me thinking, and whether you subscribe to the Jungian idea of the collective unconscious (which basically says we can tap into memories across time and space, sharing them as one of our common threads of humanity), or if it’s as simple as the fact that writers write the stories they like to read, I realized that after completing ISOBEL, I went on to encounter three titles that could be its sisters, or at least close cousins. I wanted to share these titles with you, since they’re three books I really enjoy, and I think you’ll like them, too!

1. THE WINTER SEA, by Susanna Kearsley

Set in Scotland and alternating between the present and the far past, this is a dual narrative about a writer, Carrie, and her historical fiction character, Sophia.

But there’s more fact than fiction to the story Carrie is telling, and she gets swept up in the past in this luscious story of romance, loss, and second chances.






I first read this at the suggestion of an agent years ago after I sent her my query for ISOBEL. Again, the novel slips between past and present, telling the alternating story of the Salem witch trials and a contemporary story as Connie, the modern heroine, searches to put the pieces of the past together.

This is an excellent read if you like romantic mysteries with a hint of the paranormal!

3. THE SELKIE SPELL by Sophie Moss

I met this author online last year, and when she told me about her book, I couldn’t wait to read it. Set on a small island in Ireland, this is again a dual narrative, shifting between the past and the present.

Tara, the modern heroine, is fleeing her dangerous past when she comes to Ireland, but she didn’t count on an ancient legend that might dictate her future. There’s mystery, romance, and a touch of magic in this story, and I adore the entire series.

And last but not least, THE SECRET OF ISOBEL KEY, by (ahem) me.

This story follows the modern transformation of Lou, a confused 21-year-old, juxtaposed against the history of Isobel Key, a woman accused of witchcraft in the seventeenth century.

There’s a bit of romance and a bit of mystery, and of course a luscious Scottish backdrop (complete with a handsome tour guide, Brian).

What different books have you read that touch on the same themes? Do you think it’s a case of the Jungian Collective Unconscious, or something else at play?