A “perfectly executed suspense tale very much in the mode of Daphne du Maurier’s Rebecca” (The Washington Post) from the #1 New York Times bestselling author of In a Dark, Dark Wood, The Woman in Cabin 10, The Lying Game, and The Turn of the Key.
On a day that begins like any other, Hal receives a mysterious letter bequeathing her a substantial inheritance. She realizes very quickly that the letter was sent to the wrong person—but also that the cold-reading skills she’s honed as a tarot card reader might help her claim the money.
Soon, Hal finds herself at the funeral of the deceased…where it dawns on her that there is something very, very wrong about this strange situation and the inheritance at the center of it.
Full of spellbinding menace and told in Ruth Ware’s signature suspenseful style, this is a “captivating and eerie page-turner” (The Wall Street Journal) from the Agatha Christie of our time.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
Tarot cards, an unexpected inheritance, and a gloomy mansion—in the hands of Ruth Ware, that's all a mystery lover needs for a brilliant night in. Ware keenly understands the intricate mechanics of suspense; much of the pleasure of The Death of Mrs. Westaway lies in her subtle sense of pacing and masterful use of Gothic-steeped atmosphere. She’s also created a terrific heroine in hard-luck Tarot reader Hal, who’s at once unreliable, sympathetic, and shrewd. Following Hal's journey through a maze of secrets is a deliciously nerve-jangling pursuit.
In this tense, twisty modern gothic set in England from bestseller Ware (The Lying Game), Harriet "Hal" Westaway receives a letter stating that her grandmother, Hester Westaway, is dead, and that Hal is a beneficiary of her will. Hal knows there's been a mistake her grandmother was named Marion Westaway and died two decades earlier but the 21-year-old orphan owes a lot of money to some dangerous people, feels comfortable stealing a small sum from wealthy strangers, and decides to use the skills she's honed as a fortune teller on Brighton's West Pier to scam some quick cash. But when she arrives at the crumbling family estate in Cornwall, neither the inheritance nor the Westaways are what she expects. Moreover, she begins to suspect that her invitation was no accident. Is Hal playing the Westaways, or is she somebody's pawn? Evocative prose, artfully shaded characters, and a creepy, claustrophobic atmosphere keep the pages of this explosive family drama turning.
Great idea for a story
Loved the premise of the story and all the entanglements between the characters but, it just kept plodding along. It could have been told in half the time without every nuance and facial expression described in every encounter. I gave it 4 stars for the twists and turns and still holding it together. The big reveal was a bit confusing for me. I had to back up listen again and pause to actually get it. I listened to this on audio and the narrator was phenomenal! I think without her my rating would go down to 3 stars.
Had heard glowing review on NPR. Have never read this author before and sounded good. But it wasn't. Repetitive writing, boring characters, expected story. No twists, turns or surprises. Disappointed. Will delete samples of other books by this author.
Frankly I’m puzzled by all the 5 star reviews, and I’m annoyed that I was swayed by them into purchasing this book. The writing is tedious, the character development is flimsy and pointless, and the “chilling mystery” is predictable.
Don’t waste your time or money on this lightweight garbage. If you are looking for some real gothic thrills written by someone with actual literary talent, go read the Little Stranger by Sarah Waters.