Christina (Reading Thru The Night)'s Reviews > Beneath the Shadows

Beneath the Shadows by Sara   Foster
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's review
May 28, 2012

liked it
bookshelves: suspense, 2012, mystery
Read from May 27 to 28, 2012

The baby shows up
On the porch that afternoon
Husband still missing

So, Grace and Adam are newlyweds when Adam's grandparents die and leave him this small cozy cottage in the middle of nowhere Yorkshire. (1) After some discussion on their future, Grace, Adam, and baby Millie leave the hustle and bustle of London to save up and get some quiet time. Sure, Grace is a wee bit reluctant but she'll suck it up. It makes sense after all.

And things are pretty allright. A week goes by [and maybe ten pages?] when we find Grace coming home from a day of shopping to an ominous note that hubs left saying stay put we need to talk. 'Cept, he never shows up and mysteriously, her brand-spankin' new baby is safely in her portable crib-thing on her doorstep that evening.

And that's it. Adam is missing and the case is cold. A year passes when Grace returns to figure out what she's going to do about the cottage and about her life.

I wanted to read this book primarily because of the thrilling gothic debut descriptor. Love me some gothic fiction fiercely. And it definitely had that ambiance. The cottage resides in a small town amongst the moors during the harsh winter months. The idea of Grace being trapped in the moors with her now one-year old Millie is a reoccurring possibility.

And there are some freakin' odd things going on. Like there's this woman, Meredith, who is the dominant force in the area. Initially, Meredith was warm toward Alice, but this time around she's distant, secretive, and plotting. Also, strange things begin happening. Alice has these wicked dreams of terrorizing dogs that the townfolk claim visit when a local is about to die; the old clock in the home will stop and start again randomly; and the history of hauntings is enough to scare the dickens out of anyone.

Still, she presses on because somehow all of that craziness might lead her to Adam.

Guys. There's a pretty good mystery in this book. It's safe to predict you will be intrigued enough to follow it to the end. It's twisty enough and kinda clever and it was a perfect read today whilst Florida had torrential rains due to our first Tropical Storm of the season. (2)

Here's my only gripe. I get the author wanted to make this a gothic mystery but it was slightly obnoxious that literary pasts were used to illustrate the comparison. Oh look, he's like Heathcliff or OF COURSE Alice chooses to read Rebecca to soothe her nerves. Um, really? I don't know if I would pick up that book if I'm staying in an isolated cottage with a one-year old while freaky things are happening and my husband disappeared. Still, I was capable of overlooking [and forgiving] so you should too.

Have fun with this one. If you're an elemental reader, then it should definitely be on your list for a grey and stormy day.


(1) Being quite ignorant of England and it's area, is all of Yorkshire nowhereville?

(2) Obvs this review is postdated. Dude, it was ridiculously decadent to use the rain as an excuse and read this whole book in one sitting.
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