Blurb: Sarah Carpenter lives in an isolated farmhouse in North Yorkshire and for the first time, after the death of her husband some years ago and her children, Louis and Kitty, leaving for university, she’s living alone. But she doesn’t consider herself lonely. She has two dogs, a wide network of friends and the support of her best friend, Sophie.
When an old acquaintance, Aiden Beck, needs somewhere to stay for a while, Sarah’s cottage seems ideal; and renewing her relationship with Aiden gives her a reason to smile again. It’s supposed to be temporary, but not everyone is comfortable with the arrangement: her children are wary of his motives, and Will Brewer, an old friend of her son’s, seems to have taken it upon himself to check up on Sarah at every opportunity. Even Sophie has grown remote and distant.
After Sophie disappears, it’s clear she hasn’t been entirely honest with anyone, including Will, who seems more concerned for Sarah’s safety than anyone else. As the weather closes in, events take a dramatic turn and Kitty too goes missing. Suddenly Sarah finds herself in terrible danger, unsure of who she can still trust.
But she isn’t facing this alone; she has Aiden, and Aiden offers the protection that Sarah needs. Doesn’t he?
Sarah Carpenter lives on her own in a big farmhouse where she is still dealing with the fall out after her husbands death. So when Aiden, an old friend messages her on Facebook for a place to stay she jumps at the chance because for her it is a life-line. But when her best friend Sophie becomes distant and Will Brewer, an old school friend of Sarah’s son, starts acting strangely, Sarah realises that she is never alone and underneath the remote wilds of Yorkshire evil lurks.
A chilling page-turning!
I absolutely adored this book. This story is full of bone-curdling creepy drama which I couldn’t stop reading. I felt the author came into her own by bringing the creepy and atmospheric setting to life for me in the novel. I loved the descriptions of the harsh and claustrophobic Yorkshire landscape which hindered the characters and added something sinister and somewhat special to the novel.
The novel is told from the point of view of Sarah, Aiden and also features a disturbing point of view in italics showing snippets of a character who is slowly unraveling – I won’t tell you who it is and whether they are already a POV character as that’s part of the fun of it! What I will say is that I did spend a lot of my time guessing who the ‘creepy’ POV character as I was forever changing my mind. It also really brought out the tension and unsettled me as a reader which is always good in my books.
This novel only has a very small cast of characters which really packs a punch. I enjoyed reading about Sarah who is an ordinary woman struggling to cope with the financial burden of a husband who has left her with a lot of debt but also loved Aiden who has a very secret and unusual job. I found myself gripped by both their stories and the relationship between the two characters kept me glued to the page.
The last half of the novel really ratcheted up the tension for me where the author continually revealed disturbing truth after truth while still managing to keep up the claustrophobic and haunting atmosphere – it had me gripped and gasping aloud over two days! I will now be checking out more of Elizabeth’s other novels.
This is a chilling, pulse-raising read full of tension, pace with a number of twists and surprises you won’t see coming. I would definitely recommend this to all crime fans who love a dark and disturbing read.
With thanks to Emma Dowson and Myriad Editions Publishers for my advanced review copy.
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