The Dead of Winter – Chris Priestley

This Victorian ghost story is chock full of metaphors and similes.  Michael’s father sacrificed his life for his commander, Sir Stephen.  Feeling guilt, Sir Stephen became a benefactor to Michael and his mother.  Upon his mother’s death, Michael is instructed to live with Sir Stephen at his estate, Hawton Mere.  This  creepy old estate is surrounded by a moat and marshland.  Very desolate.  Michael sees his first ghost as his carriage approaches his new home.  The story and suspense build slowly with the appropriate moaning and thumping that every haunted house should possess.  The bulk of the action occurs at the end of the book.  Michael writes the story as if a memoir and directly addresses the reader.  The inherent evil in the estate is a constant thread in the story but the root of the evil doesn’t extend past the current generation. The cover art will surely attract readers to this classic Victorian ghost story. 

Netgalley review  Publication date 01.31.12

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