Thursday, June 17, 2021

Book Review - This House Is Haunted by John Boyne


Its a cold winter day in 1867 and Eliza Caine decides that she is ready for a new challenge. She reads an ad for a governess position at Gaudlin Hall and she decides its the change she needs. When she traveling to her new home, she is shaken by an accident that occurs during her trip. However, she tries to move on from the occurrence when she meets her new wards, Isabella and Eustace. 

Upon her arrival and meeting the children, she realizes that there is no adult present with the children or any sign of her mysterious employer. The children are hesitant to speak about their parents and she is met with an similar experience with the townspeople. Eliza tries to get some sleep and decides to tackle the issue tomorrow but, she feels a foreboding presence in her room. She knows that something is very wrong at Gaudlin Hall.

Eliza tries to discount her experience from the previous night. However, she keeps feeling that something is following her. Eliza realizes that if is she and the children are to survive the violent ghost, that she will need to uncover the history behind the evil presence. Will Eliza be able to uncover the truth before it's too late?

The book was an interesting tale but, was poorly executed. While reading the novel, it reminded me of older Gothic stories I have read and I was surprised that the book was published in 2013. I thought the novel moved a bit slowly for my taste.I felt like details were used to draw out the novel in place of actual story details. Eliza is portrayed as a smart woman but, I felt like she did some questionable things. Perhaps, I should be more understanding as she seems to be grieving and the job seems to be something out of her realm of experience. The ending and "secret" was predictable and I was able to figure it out quickly.

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