Title: The Haunting of Ashburn House
Author: Darcy Coates
Series: None – standalone novel
Dates Read: December 21 – 26, 2020
Edition Read: Kindle eBook
Blurb: There’s something wrong with Ashburn House…
The ancient building has been the subject of rumours for close to a century. Its owner, Edith, refused to let guests inside and rarely visited the nearby town.
Following Edith’s death, her sole surviving relative, Adrienne, inherits the property. Adrienne’s only possessions are a suitcase of luggage, twenty dollars, and her pet cat. Ashburn House is a lifeline she can’t afford to refuse.
Adrienne doesn’t believe in ghosts, but it’s hard to ignore the unease that grows as she explores her new home. Strange messages have been etched into the wallpaper, an old grave is hidden in the forest behind the house, and eerie portraits in the upstairs hall seem to watch her every movement.
As she uncovers more of the house’s secrets, Adrienne begins to believe the whispered rumours about Ashburn may hold more truth than she ever suspected. The building has a bleak and grisly past, and as she chases the threads of a decades-old mystery, Adrienne realises she’s become the prey to something deeply unnatural and intensely resentful.
Only one thing is certain: Ashburn’s dead are not at rest.
Well that was a creepy book! And I made the mistake of reading it before bed. Twice.
This book was a delightfully spooky read. I don’t read a ton of horror, but this was very well done. A distant relative leaves you a mysterious house in their will – who wouldn’t jump at the chance to move in? Even if it’s super creepy, with weird messages carved into the walls, all the mirrors taken down, and a strange attic room filled with boxes of candles. I loved how this book kept me guessing. It was definitely a task to try and put together all the pieces of this puzzle and, in the end, I still didn’t catch the plot twist.
I really liked Adrienne. She was down on her luck, but she didn’t take stupid risks like a lot of characters in horror stories do. I found her very relatable – I probably would have done the same things she did in these situations. Besides, who hasn’t been down on their luck and willing to do whatever it takes to survive? That’s what really sold this for me. Addy is a survivor. Plus she has a cat, Wolfgang, who I absolutely loved. And yes, he totally saves the day in the end. Sort of.
I also really loved the small town feel. I believe that it takes place in a fictional small town in Australia, but really, it could be anywhere. All the residents know each other and by extension know everything that happens in the town. Or at least, they think they do. I also really liked the four women who befriend Addy (sort of) and help her out (sort of). This is a rare book where the female protagonist does NOT have a love interest. Addy isn’t interested in that. What she really wants is to find friends in this new home town of hers. Again, something that feels very relatable.
This book was great. Probably better to read it around Halloween instead of Christmas, like I did, but enjoyable nonetheless.
GoodReads rating: 4 stars
Categories: Books I've Read