- 6,49 €
A chilling and spooky Gothic historical thriller reminiscent of Rebecca and The Turn of the Screw, dripping with the dark twists and eerie surprises that are the hallmarks of Edgar Allan Poe, from the New York Times and internationally bestselling author of Citadel.
In a remote village near the English coast, residents gather in a misty churchyard. More than a decade into the twentieth century, superstition still holds sway: It is St. Mark’s Eve, the night when the shimmering ghosts of those fated to die in the coming year are said to materialize and amble through the church doors.
Alone in the crowd is Constantia Gifford, the taxidermist’s daughter. Twenty-two and unmarried, she lives with her father on the fringes of town, in a decaying mansion cluttered with the remains of his once world-famous museum of taxidermy. No one speaks of why the museum was shuttered or how the Giffords fell so low. Connie herself has no recollection—a childhood accident has erased all memory of her earlier days. Even those who might have answers remain silent. The locals shun Blackthorn House, and the strange spinster who practices her father’s macabre art.
As the last peal of the midnight bell fades to silence, a woman is found dead—a stranger Connie noticed near the church. In the coming days, snippets of long lost memories will begin to tease through Connie’s mind, offering her glimpses of her vanished years. Who is the victim, and why has her death affected Connie so deeply? Why is she watched by a mysterious figure who has suddenly appeared on the marsh nearby? Is her father trying to protect her with his silence—or someone else? The answers are tied to a dark secret that lies at the heart of Blackthorn House, hidden among the bell jars of her father’s workshop—a mystery that draws Connie closer to danger . . . closer to madness . . . closer to the startling truth.
Macabre atmosphere and an appealing heroine can't save this gothic historical thriller by bestseller Mosse (The Winter Ghosts) from sinking under the weight of its muddled, fantastic plot. Set in 1912 during several sodden spring days in rural West Sussex, the story centers on 22-year-old Constantia "Connie" Gifford the titular character (and a deft taxidermist in her own right) who, despite lingering seizures from the fall that almost killed her a decade earlier, is about the only thing keeping her alcoholic widowed father, a once-renowned avian taxidermist, and their isolated household afloat. But then the discovery of a murdered woman near their property, Blackthorn House, and a series of other disturbing events start to trigger Connie's long-repressed memories of the night she fell, threatening the Giffords' very lives. As Connie and new friend Harry Woolston, a handsome aspiring painter hunting for his missing father, join forces to investigate, some sparks do fly as well as far too plentiful feathers (and guts) for some readers to stomach.