My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Hardcover: 368 pages
Expected publication: March 17th 2020
Publisher: Minotaur Books
For more than two centuries, Winterbourne Hall has stood atop a bluff overseeing the English countryside of Cornwall and the sea beyond.
In 1947, Londoner Alice Miller accepts a post as governess at Winterbourne, looking after Captain Jonathan de Grey’s twin children. Falling under the de Greys’ spell, Alice believes the family will heal her own past sorrows. But then the twins’ adoration becomes deceitful and taunting. Their father, ever distant, turns spiteful and cruel. The manor itself seems to lash out. Alice finds her surroundings subtly altered, her air slightly chilled. Something malicious resents her presence, something clouding her senses and threatening her very sanity.
In present day New York, art gallery curator Rachel Wright has learned she is a descendant of the de Greys and heir to Winterbourne. Adopted as an infant, she never knew her birth parents or her lineage. At long last, Rachel will find answers to questions about her identity that have haunted her entire life. But what she finds in Cornwall is a devastating tragic legacy that has afflicted generations of de Greys. A legacy borne from greed and deceit, twisted by madness, and suffused with unrequited love and unequivocal rage.
First gripping sentence:
𝑳𝒊𝒔𝒕𝒆𝒏! 𝑪𝒂𝒏 𝒚𝒐𝒖 𝒉𝒆𝒂𝒓 𝒊𝒕?
𝘛𝘩𝘦 𝘞𝘰𝘮𝘢𝘯 𝘪𝘯 𝘵𝘩𝘦 𝘔𝘪𝘳𝘳𝘰𝘳 by Rebecca James is an unnerving gothic tale with an insidious creepy atmosphere that drew me in to the book very quickly.
A dark tale told in several narrative’s, past and present, it centers around the Winterbourne mansion and those that lived there. In 1947, Alice Miller takes a governess position for Captain De Grey, looking after his twins. Winterbourne seems to feed on the grief and loneliness of its inhabitants, causing problems and a scandal for Alice who left under mysterious circumstances. Rachel, an orphan, inherits Winterbourne in present day and feels the echo of the women past and is drawn in to the mystery of Alice as she searches for answers about her mother and why she gave her up for adoption.
This is a haunting tale, reminiscent of some of the Gothic classics and I thoroughly enjoyed it. It has all the ear-marks of what I look for in a good book; red-herrings that keep me guessing and characters that are flawed and sometimes unlikable. The ending gives satisfaction and surprise. 𝘛𝘩𝘦 𝘞𝘰𝘮𝘢𝘯 𝘪𝘯 𝘵𝘩𝘦 𝘔𝘪𝘳𝘳𝘰𝘳 is a fantastic read for any fan of the genre.
Thank you NetGalley, St. Martins Press, and Minotaur Books for providing me with this galley to read and review!
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