Landscape designer Jonas Laurence arrives at the cheerless and fog enswathed Hillcomb Hall, home to the Earl of Stanley and his family, to renovate their crumbling gardens. With a great storm crashing all around, his time is at the mercy of the house’s odd and mysterious occupants. Captivated by the hauntingly attractive portrait of Lord Stanley’s ancestor, which constantly seems to watch and taunt him, Jonas’s dreams become weird and distressing. And his waking moments are consumed by the strange stories and weird atmosphere of the manor estate. Ghostly visits in the night leave Jonas no choice but to accept his attraction to the otherworldly spirit from the painting. But is this affaire de coeur real? Or it all just a trick of the mind, a sinister game being played by the inhabitants of Hillcomb Hall?
- 1 To Be Read list
Publisher: Moody Boxfan Books
Tropes: Haunted House
Word Count: 33000
Setting: Edwardian Manor House; English Countryside
Languages Available: English
Series Type: Same Universe / Various Characters
Jonas felt the spirit move towards him; he could feel the heat radiating from his body.
A heat like the wicks of a thousand oil lamps, all burning at once. A heat that started small but that he knew would rage up, like a fire, and consume him.
“I have waited for this moment ever since my eyes first fell on you,” said the ghost. “I have studied you, you know.”
“Yes. I know.”
This is an excellently told haunting tale, with a bit of suspense, a dash of mystery and romance, a slightly Gothic feel, set in England’s countryside a little over a century ago. It includes talk of the suffrage movement and includes themes of life in a home where Upstairs/Downstairs dynamics are still a prominent way of life.
The characters are vibrant and alive, the landscape very “Bronte-esque” with its constant rain and fog making for quite the contrast between light and dark. I loved it!
[Check out Sharonica Logic's website for the full review!]
About The Darkly Enchanted Romance Series
Historical romance with a paranormal edge! The Darkly Enchanted Romance series takes its inspiration from mythology, fairy tales, folklore, and legend to give you sweet and sultry romances with just a touch of spookiness. Witches, ghosts, and mythical creatures - you know never what you might fall in love with in these enchanted stories.