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Five Mile House

3.38 of 5 stars 3.38  ·  rating details  ·  200 ratings  ·  34 reviews
A modern day mystery haunted by a 19th Century ghost.

Eleanor Bly haunts Five Mile House, looking for someone to tell her story to. Jumping from a window to her death in 1889, Eleanor's soul is at unrest until the truth is told about her life and death. She finally finds Leslie, one hundred years later. Leslie bears an uncanny resemblance to Eleanor and is sympathetic if on
Hardcover, 288 pages
Published October 13th 2000 by Bloomsbury USA
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 393)
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Rating clarification: 2.5 stars

Two women, separated by 100 years, are on a collision course of fate when the past and present intertwine in the house at the center of it all: Five Mile House.

Leslie Stone has left her job as a New York cop after killing a suspect in a toddler's violent murder. She's haunted by the child, her actions, and her fears of losing her sanity. To combat the stress, her husband, Greg, packs Leslie and their 2 young daughters up and moves to the town of Wellington. There,
Nancy Oakes
Leslie Stone is a cop with two little girls & a husband who one day comes across a crime scene where a 4 year old has been brutally murdered. The police catch the guy they think is the perpetrator and take him to a holding cell at the station. Leslie goes to talk to him, telling her bosses she wants to try to make him talk, and shoots him. She is arrested, put on trial, and goes to a mental hospital until the doctors think it's okay for her to be out.

Meantime, her husband is a home restorer
“I am Eleanor, and I, like this house, am haunted.” So opens Five Mile House. Former detective Leslie Stone is also a haunted woman, plagued by her memories of countless child abduction/murder cases and of the perp she shot down in cold blood. She also sees the ghost of the little girl that he killed. Hospitalized for months for a complete emotional breakdown, she finally returns home to a family which, at best, treats her with wariness. Her husband Greg has accepted a restoration job in the rem ...more
Aug 10, 2014 Geoff added it
My mom got an Advanced Readers Copy of this book years ago when she was working for an e-commerce company. I started reading it in high school, but had to put it down because of homework. Last time I was at my parents' house, I made sure to grab it so I could finally finish reading it.

Honestly, I really enjoyed it. I liked the dual narratives, and the story itself is rather intriguing. Parts of the book were a bit dense stylistically, but it worked for this story.

If you are okay with a bit of
Feb 14, 2008 Lorraine rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: everyone
Karen Novak does not write ordinary mysteries. Instead, she has almost invented a new genre: the literary gothic, the literay mystery, not sure what to call it, but damn her sentences are gorgeous, and her plots are labyrinthine.

Leslie Stone is a Child Protective Services worker who works with an urban police department. One hot, oh-so-hot summer, there are a rash of child killings. Leslie feels herself beginning to disintegrate under the stress of the heat, her fear for her own daughters, the
Matt Schiariti
From first page to last I had a hard time putting this book down.

At the center of the novel we have Leslie who's probably one of the most flawed protagonists I've read in recent memory. She's most definetly NOT perfect. She's got her own demons. I could understand her motivations in most instances, but wasn't always thrilled with her decisions. But that makes for a great main character. One that can surprise and disappoint. In other words, one who's human like the rest of us.

A huge life changing
I saw this book on a lot of lists for the R.I.P. reading challenge held every year over at Stainless Steel Droppings. My library didn't have a copy which made me want to read it even more. One day I was wandering Goodwill and there it was on the shelf! I thought it was serendipity! On further reflection I should have pondered that there was probably a good reason why the library didn't carry it and that it was cast off to the thrift store. Anyway I saved this book to read for this years R.I.P ch ...more
Not a bad book. I don't like crime novels, but I do like supernatural themes, and this book handled both fairly well. From what I understand, this is the first novel by Karen Novak, and as such, is considerably polished.

The story moved along quite nicely, only faltering in a couple of places where the author used such abrupt changes in points of view that I actually thought there might have been a page or two missing from my copy of the book. I actually checked the page numbers to make sure e
Loved this! Aside from dystopian fiction, gothic mysteries such as this tends to be my favorite genre. I believe that I got this from a list of Gone Girl read alikes and although this doesn't measure up to it, it was still pretty darn good!
Karen Novak's Leslie Stone series which starts with "Five Mile House," focuses on missing children mysteries and as a "detective series" are really in a class by themselves. Leslie Stone is a child abuse specialist and so this series deals with difficult subject matter. There is also a supernatural component to these with Five Mile House narrated largely by a ghost. In ways, these feel more gothic novel in nature and finding a modern comparison is, for me, quite impossible. Needless to say, this ...more
Interesting premise that took too many wrong turns. It never really seemed to find its 'voice' (as it were) and I found myself contemplating giving up on it at least 3 times.

However, the one bright spot of this was the very conflicted main character of Leslie Stone. Were it not for me empathizing with her, I probably would have put this back on the shelf -- or straight in the donate-to-the-library pile.

Not really recommended.
The one thing this book did have going for it was the twists and turns. I never knew what to expect and I like that. Not only that but Karen Novak had a way of bringing most of all those winding twisting roads to a head. It didn't spine-tingle as much as I'd hoped for and it made me ask a lot of questions that weren't necessarily ever answered but overall I was pretty-well satisfied.
There is an amazing amount of plot in this 200-page novel. She managed to build the character and do an intricate ghost/crime/Da Vinci Code-type plot in such a short while. The only thing I didn't like is that the main character paid absolutely no attention to children for the whole book, even though all of her actions were supposed to be based on protecting them....odd.
Kim Sasso
If there were a "three and a half stars" option I'd go with that for this spooky book. The resolution was a tad unsatisfying, but I enjoyed the ride. I wish I were half as gifted at writing reviews as Karen Novak is at weaving a good tale.
I know for a fact now that I have read this book before and it didn't impress me the last time either. Really a boring ghost story. It isn't really scary. Just your typical haunted house book..of ghost dies a pretty nasty death and doesn't take it well and targets the female member of the household...that is it!
A sort of modern gothic tale. leslie Stone, a detective who has just shot a child killer, is moved into the country by her husband, where strange things begin happening. This novel was well written, despite the fact that I didn;t care for the plot at all. I still enjoyed it because of Novak's writing style.
All in all a good book. It touches on witchcraft-which I didn't expect. The author draws you in by connecting you with the main character. There seems to be a little too much going on and the connection isn't always quite clear. The ending is pretty generic but a good read overall.
My rating would actually be between 3 and 4 stars. I liked the story of the two women, but the reason for all the mayhem didn't make sense to me - probably because when I reached those parts, my eyes glazed over a little and I didn't read as carefully as I should have.
I just had to read one ghost story prior to Halloween.
This book was it.

It was different and the ending didn't come out quite like I preferred, but it fulfilled my need for a ghost story this Halloween season.
one of the WORST books i've ever read. she took a potentially interesting storyline and mucked it up with a remarkably unsympathetic protagonist, silly meandering, and loose ends. yuk. what a waste of time.
A few points in the book threw me off, but everything led together at the end. I haven't read too many books switching between views in this manner. The style and ideas of the story left an impression on me.
Karen Hogan
I'm still scratching my head. Ghost story involving a female cop. First, she wasnt a likeable protagonist. The story idea was promising but the plot was messed up. I had more questions than answers at the end.
This is a phenominal book. Being a mother I found the beginning of the book difficult to read, but once I got past that this book was a page turner. Excellent read.
A very pleasantly surprising reading experience. I had not heard of this book or author but found this ghost story to be fulfilling and a quick easy read.
This was a really dark novel. I was so engrossed but at the same time I was repulsed. It was difficult to separate my life from the events of the book.
Mary  (Biblophile)
An extremely well written novel with in-depth characters and plot. Good mystery with shades of the supernatural. A very engrossing tale. Couldn't put it down.
Just goes to show what a crazy, disjointed ending can do to a perfectly good story. I'm scratching this author off my list.
I usually don't like this kind of mystery but her writing is pretty good and the handling of the subject is better than most.
The plot of this book was good, but there was no depth to some of the characters. Parts of it were somewhat wooden.
4.5 out of 5
Leslie Stone - investigates "ghosts" in a house up for restoration.
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