Monday, October 7, 2019

Review: The Haunting of Maddy Clare by Simone St. James

Sarah Piper's lonely, threadbare existence changes when her temporary agency sends her to assist a ghost hunter. Alistair Gellis—rich, handsome, scarred by World War I, and obsessed with ghosts—has been summoned to investigate the spirit of nineteen-year-old maid Maddy Clare, who is haunting the barn where she committed suicide.

 Since Maddy hated men in life, it is Sarah's task to confront her in death. Soon Sarah is caught up in a desperate struggle. For Maddy's ghost is real, she's angry, and she has powers that defy all reason. Can Sarah and Alistair's assistant, the rough, unsettling Matthew Ryder, discover who Maddy was, where she came from, and what is driving her desire for vengeance—before she destroys them all?

 Paperback, 318 pages
 Published March 6th 2012
by Berkley Books
*** 1/2

I read Simone St. James' latest book, The Broken Girls, and absolutely loved it. It’s the book I recommend whenever I get the chance. It was my first experience with this author so now I am backtracking to read her previous works.

The Haunting of Maddie Clare was her debut, coming in at 318 pages I found it to be a quick read not just because of the size but rather I was drawn right in. I love a good ghost story, especially when there are mysterious and creepy elements. And this book had the right blend, from interesting characters, a good mystery and a restless spirit.

Taking place after WW1 ends and drawing from the aftermath there are layers here and relationship that creates bonds spanning social classes. It was atmospheric at times with flawed suspicious characters and the right balance of suspense and creepiness. The ending was fitting and satisfying.  Can't wait to dive into another St. James book.

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