House of Echoes Paperback
When Joss, an adopted child, discovers that her real mother has left the beautiful family home, Belheddon Hall, to her, she is thrilled, until she discovers that the Hall is haunted by a presence which will not tolerate husbands or sons living in the house.
Joss Grant is eager to begin a new life when she inherits Belheddon Hall.
She brings her husband, Luke, and their small son, Tom, to the dilapidated house, and sets about discovering her family roots.
But not long after they move in, Tom wakes screaming at night.
Joss hears echoing voices and senses an invisible presence watching her from the shadows.
Are they spirits from the past? As she learns, with mounting horror, of Belheddon's tragic history, she realises that both her family and her own sanity are at the mercy of a violent and powerful energy that seems beyond anyone's control.
- Format: Paperback
- Pages: 448 pages
- Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
- Publication Date: 19/02/2009
- Category: Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)
- ISBN: 9780007280780
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Review by Tess_Elizabeth
Not my favorite Erskine, but not a bad little book either. Filled with just the right level of creepy, this is a suspenseful ghost story with ties to the time of the Wars of the Roses. It more or less follows the premise of a family inheriting an old house with a reputation. Shortly thereafter strange things begin to occur: the sound of children playing, a mysterious man who only the toddler can see, and white roses appearing out of nowhere.What irked me about this book was what is kind of always lingering in the back of most of Erskine's novels: how the people who are supposed to love each other are always somewhat nasty to one another. It seems like it's always a woman who is experiencing something supernatural, and the men in her life don't believe her, instead chalking her experiences up to female hysteria. The men of her books are liberal with the word "bitch" when describing women. In this case, Luke is kind of a dick to his wife, Joss, dismissing all her experiences out of hand. If she does something he doesn't like he throws a hissy-fit. There is also the trope of women who hate each other and can't get along. Joss's sister, Lyn, is downright awful to her. These are themes that seem to run through all of the Erskine books I've read, but seemed especially prominent in House of Echoes. On the other hand, her characters didn't seem to have such crippling alcohol dependencies in this one...The above issues aside, this is a good ghost story and a fast page-turner.