I am thrilled to be taking part in day one of this blog tour. Many thanks have to go to Love Books Group for having me on the tour and for telling me about the book launch, without which I might not have discovered this unusual book.
Langlands House is haunted, but not by the ghost you think.
Augusta McAndrew lives on a remote Scottish estate with her grandmother, Rose. For her own safety, she hides from outsiders, as she has done her entire life. Visitors are few and far between – everyone knows that Langlands House is haunted.
One day Rose goes out and never returns, leaving Augusta utterly alone. Then Tom McAllister arrives – good-looking and fascinating, but dangerous. What he has to tell her could tear her whole world apart.
As Tom and Augusta become ever closer, they must face the question: is love enough to overcome the ghosts of the past?
In the end, Langlands House and its inhabitants hold more secrets than they did in the beginning…
My Review: I’m not sure where to start with this book. The blurb says a lot but equally gives very little away so I wasn’t sure what to expect. I didn’t have to worry though, this book grabbed me from the first page and as I read it slowly sucked me in. I read most of this in an evening, a feat which I rarely manage but here it was easy. The writing is so good it just draws you into the story and you keep reading because you want to know what is going on. I spent a fair bit of time wondering what was going on, what Augusta was being told and what I thought was going on were not the same at all. I was quite confused until I got to the point where things became clearer. However that clarity only raised more questions and so my questions continued.
Unlike many books this one has a very small cast of characters, some of whom are only in it for a paragraph or a couple of pages. There are essentially only three main characters with the rest playing minor roles. However, this works perfectly because of the story. As Augusta has hidden from the world for years her own world is obviously limited and therefore a large number of characters would not fit at all.
While this is not a ghost story as such it is creepy in places. Don’t let that put you off though, I don’t read creepy or scary books and this book I thoroughly enjoyed. There’s a level of isolation, emptiness and possibly neglect (not sure that’s the best word to use) throughout the story and the fact that it is maintained as well as it is is testament to the skill of the author. I finished the book a few hours before I typed this and I’m still unsure how I feel about Augusta and her situation and I suspect it will take me a while to work that out.
This is the first book I’ve read by Helen Grant but it certainly won’t be the last. If you want something different with a bit of mystery and intrigue then this is definitely worth a read.
Helen Grant writes thrillers with a Gothic flavour and ghost stories. Her first novel, The Vanishing of Katharina Linden, was shortlisted for the CILIP Carnegie Medal and won an ALA Alex Award in the US. Her other books include the exciting Forbidden Spaces trilogy.
Helen’s latest novel Ghost (Fledgling Press 2018) is set in Perthshire, where she has lived since 2011. When she is not writing, Helen loves to research the lost country houses of Scotland and to visit the sites where possible. Her experiences of exploring these fascinating places inspired her to write Ghost.