Soon to be a major motion picture, directed by Lenny Abrahamson and starring Domhnall Gleeson and Ruth Wilson.
"The #1 book of 2009...Several sleepless nights are guaranteed."—Stephen King, Entertainment Weekly
One postwar summer in his home of rural Warwickshire, Dr. Faraday, the son of a maid who has built a life of quiet respectability as a country physician, is called to a patient at lonely Hundreds Hall. Home to the Ayres family for over two centuries, the Georgian house, once impressive and handsome, is now in decline, its masonry crumbling, its gardens choked with weeds, the clock in its stable yard permanently fixed at twenty to nine. Its owners—mother, son, and daughter—are struggling to keep pace with a changing society, as well as with conflicts of their own. But are the Ayreses haunted by something more sinister than a dying way of life? Little does Dr. Faraday know how closely, and how terrifyingly, their story is about to become intimately entwined with his.
Customer ReviewsSee All
I really enjoyed this book. If you're looking for a Stephen King-esque thrill ride, this is not it. But if you are looking for a haunting, complex and atmospheric novel about rich and fascinating characters who happen to be living in a house with a malevolent force, then you will be happy. This is an old school ghost story. Like The Haunting of Hill House, it unfolds slowly and inexorably until I was desperate to know what would happen. Maybe it's more of a drama than a ghost story, but either way, I was hooked!
If you think at the end this is just a ghost story, you've missed the point
This is an intellectual, haunting tale of obsession, madness and ethreal creepiness that brings to mind "The Turn of the Screw" in many senses. It is complex yet tantalizes the reader (or listener!) with a seemingly simple tale of a doctor and his care for the unusual family with which he finds himself involved. But every element of the novel is carefully placed and draws the reader deeper and deeper into the mind of the narrator who may or may not be what he appears. "The little stranger", according to him, is that little evil, that alter self, that resides in us all and it leads the reader into unexpected places atmospheric and otherworldly. At the end the reader is left with the question - is there a maleviolent spirit haunting The Hundreds or is it all in the mind of a man obsessed with class and the house that has eluded- and excluded him all his life. If you want a smart, haunting tale, this is the one for you.
you could almost subtitle this...she's just not that into you
This book was so filled with subtext, it's almost like a thousand different scenarios could be taking place. It reminded me of Remains of the Day...so much unsaid, but giving such an impression.
I think one thing to point out though, is that this author regulary has gay characters, no subtext needed...not overtly this time, but on a subtle level, perhaps.
Oh hey Mel, I was so happy to read your review...I agree with you 100%.