The Silent Companions. Laura Purcell

3.5 stars for this deliciously creepy tale.

Laura Purcell has written an entertainingly dark novel, set in Victorian and Caroline (that is, during the reign of Charles I) England, of grief, insane asylums, witchcraft, and the uncanny. Elsie Bainbridge is a pregnant widow who initially struck me as cold, self-absorbed and fairly unlikeable but I warmed to her as the novel progressed. Other main characters include her beloved younger brother Jolyon and her cousin through marriage, Sarah; seventeenth century characters include Anne and Josiah Bainbridge and their daughter Hetta. The story does not exactly hang together flawlessly but it is such a Gothic delight that I found I did not care.

Comparisons to Susan Hill are deserved. And if you liked Dr Who’s weeping angels, you will love this novel!

I received this ebook free from NetGalley and Bloomsbury. UK publication date (hardcover): 5 October 2017.

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