When Arthur Kipps attends the funeral of Alice Drablow he is unaware of the tragic secrets which lie hidden behind her house. It is not until he glimpses a woman dressed all in black at the funeral that a creeping sense of unease begins to take hold…
In my reading of it, I don’t think I gave this book the time is deserves. My reading habits have been terrible of late and it’s taken me a few months of reading a page or two at a time, to really benefit from the fantastic atmosphere Susan Hill creates, you really need to read it in one or two sittings at most.
If you’re looking for thrills, spills and the gore of a shlock horror novel, then this is probably not the story for you, but if you’re after genuinely creepy, atmospheric chills, then this is most definitely the story for you.
Hill builds an increasing air of tension as Arthur Kipps (and he has a wonderful ‘voice’) tells his story, the events at the remote Eel Marsh House, the unwillingness of the locals to break their silence over what they know – despite a generally friendly and helpful nature, increase the feeling of isolation, and if you don’t find yourself shuddering as Arthur learns the truth and the story draws to a horrifying and dramatic conclusion then I’d be very surprised.
All in all a fantastic book, and well worth your time (and I should have given it more of mine…)