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.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
Ghosts roam the mansion that’s at the heart of Sarah Waters' wonderfully spooky novel, but these spirits are more ambiguous than the phantoms of traditional supernatural stories. Hundreds Hall is the crumbling home of the once-prosperous Ayres family, whose sense of despair and decay is rooted in not only the building’s unsettling otherworldly occupants but also the seismic shifts in Britain's class structure post-World War II. As the idealistic Dr. Faraday befriends Caroline, the unmarried daughter of the house, the story gains emotional depth, making the events that unfold that much more chilling.
Waters (The Night Watch) reflects on the collapse of the British class system after WWII in a stunning haunted house tale whose ghosts are as horrifying as any in Shirley Jackson's The Haunting of Hill House. Doctor Faraday, a lonely bachelor, first visited Hundreds Hall, where his mother once worked as a parlor maid, at age 10 in 1919. When Faraday returns 30 years later to treat a servant, he becomes obsessed with Hundreds's elegant owner, Mrs. Ayres; her 24-year-old son, Roderick, an RAF airman wounded during the war who now oversees the family farm; and her slightly older daughter, Caroline, considered a "natural spinster" by the locals, for whom the doctor develops a particular fondness. Supernatural trouble kicks in after Caroline's mild-mannered black Lab, Gyp, attacks a visiting child. A damaging fire, a suicide and worse follow. Faraday, one of literature's more unreliable narrators, carries the reader swiftly along to the devastating conclusion.
Worth reading but...
It was enjoyable and certainly had it's high points, but it should have been about 400 pages instead of 500...long-winded writer. A little anticlimactic at points but overall good. Like "Grey Gardens" set in England.
I cannot believe how disappointing this book was.
The little stranger
Not reasonable and bizarre! Kill,kill,kill! Don't waste your time