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Midnight is a Lonely Place

4.01  ·  Rating details ·  2,440 ratings  ·  149 reviews

After a broken love affair, biographer Kate Kennedy retires to a remote cottage on the wild Essex coast to work on her new book until her landlord's daughter uncovers a Roman site nearby and long-buried passions are unleashed! In her lonely cottage, Kate is terrorized by mysterious forces. What do these ghosts want? That the truth about the violent events of long ago be ex

Paperback, 448 pages
Published October 31st 1994 by HarperCollins (first published 1994)
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Average rating 4.01  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,440 ratings  ·  149 reviews

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Jun 25, 2009 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: spookies, 2010-reads
What did I just read?

Oh yeah, Barbara Erskine.

Ummm, does anybody have an extra 6 reading hours to spare? I'd like to get them back if possible.

OK, refocus.

In this Barbara Erskine doosie, the murderous results of a Roman/Celtic love triangle over 19 centuries old (that's 1,900 years to those of you numerically challenged) is threatening to engulf our intrepid heroine Kate, her erstwhile poet boyfriend Jon, and the petulant, acts-like-a-14-year-old-but-is-really-27 year old landlord's son Greg.
Jun 21, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This is my favourite of Barbara Erskine's books. The first I ever read and the best. I originally picked it up because I loved the idea of renting a cottage in the middle of nowhere to write a book, I couldn't put it down once the spooky things started happening. ...more
May 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I read this one actually 13 years ago, but I still remember how it stole my sleep and had me look over my shoulder in the dark of night.

A great story that will haunt your dreams and suffocate you at times.

I really should check out Ms Erskine's other work too.

5 stars!
Linda Hopf
Nov 15, 2014 rated it liked it
Less than 3 but more than 2. It had potential but disappointed in the end. Some scary bits that just sort of wimped out. Learned a lot about tides, dunes, a damp cold... Kate was an idiot. About two thirds into the book Kate faded into the background a bit and some of the more interesting characters stepped up. The premise was good but the author seemed to be circling around & around the same route - house, beach walk, smell of jasmine/ dirt trail/ maggots, wander through the woods, accident/sca ...more
Feb 15, 2012 rated it liked it
I'm almost at the end of this book and it is the first Erskine book I read, mostly since it is the only one the local library carried of her books. I saw it recommended on book list after reading Susanna Kearsley books - as a similar genre. It has been extremely dissappointing, compared with Kearsley novels. The last 1/2 to 1/3 reads more like a teenage horror movie with characters continually doing unbelievalby stupid things that get themselves hurt or killed, and is very drawn out. There is ve ...more
Jan 09, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: favorites
Oh My God.

I read this on a cold, wet windy March weekend(yes,March. Global Warming who?). And I was so hooked.My Mum lent it to me- she has had it for years and it is one of the books she has kept and re-read, which is odd for a thriller/horror story in our house - you know whats going to happen right so why read it again?

Anyway I love everything about this- the Roman influence, the light lashings of romance, the terror, the ties to the water and the sea and the Gods and Goddesses (of whom I a
Lindsay Winter
Jan 21, 2015 rated it it was ok
Shelves: read-2015
The first half of the book was okay and had some scary parts that genuinely creeped me out. However, at the halfway mark Barbara Erskine had pretty much revealed everything about the ghosts and the murder and so it was no longer a secret to the reader and I thought what on earth can happen I know everything and I'm only halfway through!

The second half of the book was just sooo drawn out it became ridiculous, seriously it did not need to be that long! I felt like she had a target of so many words
Mar 04, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I thought I'd go back and read Barbara Erskine after a long time. This was probably not the best one to start with.

Loved the north Essex setting, the heroine was ok until you threw in the annoying ex and the at times psychotic neighbour's son (admittedly that wasn't entirely his fault.). The Druid/Roman relationship was quite touching at times too...BUT

halfway through all was revealed so I thought I was at the end of the book, but still had to plod on through pages of running about in the woods,
Aug 10, 2013 rated it liked it
With a slow beginning, a weak ending and a supposed "heroine" that had me face-palming in frustration, it could be easy to talk myself into not liking this book at all. But there was a while there, somewhere past the middle that, even while screaming at the stupidity of the characters, I found myself checking the night-black windows of my house periodically to ensure that the ghosts of Claudia, Nion and Marcus had not traveled through the pages to haunt me also.
Not every book is perfect after al
Nov 05, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed the general atmosphere of it but the plot was a little underdone for me - there was a lot of repeating themselves and running around in circles. Literally, which felt like a bad horror movie from the 90s rather than a historical fiction novel with thriller undertones.
Jennifer Murgia
Sep 17, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Ooohhhh- I had chills! I first borrowed this book from my library and couldn't put it down. I would think of it during the day and couldn't wait until nighttime to pick it back up again. The freaky thing was, was when I finally finished the book - it was midnight. I of course had to return the book but I longed to have it on my own shelf so I hunted it down at a used bookstore. It's no longer in print and I was lucky enough to only pay $3.00 for it. Now it's mine and I can get spooked anytime I ...more
Oct 17, 2019 rated it did not like it
What a load of old toss. It was recommended to me as being spooky and chilling, but it was just dreary. It was far too long and could have done with losing pages of the "Kate felt cold, the wood burner had gone out, she got scared going out to get logs" repetition. There were some weird errors - catkins in November/December? Possible, but unlikely. "Jetsam weed" - since when has seaweed been jetsam? And an ancient Roman ghost cursing people by invoking the (Greek) Styx? The dialogue is stilted, ...more
Becky Boylett
Jul 28, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: supernatural
This is one of my favorites by this author. i read it after fining it among my mothers books when i was looking for something to read, it kept me on th edge of my seat, infact it made me slightly jump a few times too. i will read this book again for sure.
Kathleen Dixon
Feb 07, 2018 rated it it was ok
Recommended to Kathleen by: Anna (BLK)
This sounded like it would be a book I'd enjoy, and if I'd been able to get a hard copy from the library I quite likely would have read it all the way through. Unfortunately, I could only get it on e-copy and if a book doesn't grip me immediately I forget to open it up again. I'm just not an e-reader type of reading person.

Also, the book felt like it was winding up to be a horror story, and it's very rare that I'll enjoy one of those. The key character has to be particularly compelling, and I ju
Rosalyn Jones
Couldn't put the book down
Ruth Caukwell
Great book and had fun revisiting such a fabulous author. A must read if you like a bit of the 'other-
side' flavour in your books!!

Ruth Caukwell
Author, Blogger, Teacher and Public Speaker plus Proofreader & Editor
Member of New Zealand Society of Authors (NZSA) and, Silverfox MGMT Model

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Feb 15, 2011 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Oct 07, 2018 rated it it was ok
A friend recommended this book to me and after having read it I'm not sure why. I'm a huge fan of Susanna Kearsley so after reading the synopsis I thought, alright I'll give it a go. It started off okay but about half way in it really took a nosedive and never recovered. It made no sense that Kate would insist on staying at the cottage given everything that had happened there. No reasonable person would have. Once it was revealed what was going on with the two opposing spirits the story stalled ...more
Midnight is a Lonely Place - G+
Erskine, Barbara - standalone

After a broken love affair, Kate Kennedy retreats to a cottage on the Essex coast to work on her latest project. To her alarm, her peace and solitude is replaced by a sense of fear as strange incidents begin to occur - incidents that connect, Kate is sure, with the Roman grave being excavated.

This book seriously scared me and, occasionally, creeped me out. I keep wanting to read another by Erskine, but am not certain I'm old enough to r
Jan 19, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mar 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I would recommend this for anyone who loves mystery time slip novels reaching back into history and present. There is nothing I dislike about the book but since it was written in the 1990's you can now see the difference to modern day...playing cassette tapes, backing up files on disks etc but the main story is fabulous, lost count of the number of times I've read it. ...more
Jul 25, 2008 rated it really liked it
This book sent shivers up and down my spine, especially reading it alone late at night.
Nov 05, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This wins the Best Ever Book Title Award - and it's genuinely scary in places (especially if you're reading alone at night in bed with no-one else in the house - as I was) ...more
Mar 22, 2015 rated it really liked it
Barbara Erskine is new to me and I really enjoyed this book. Good mix of history and modern chiller.
Jul 29, 2015 rated it really liked it
Absolutely hooked from the start. Would have given it 5 stars, but the ending let it down a bit.
Mar 27, 2016 rated it really liked it
It was a strange read. It sort of had a weak ending after a reasonably good main part of the story. Overall not her best work but still a food read.
Nov 30, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Another gem from one of my favourite authors.
Jul 23, 2019 rated it liked it
I am I have read and very much enjoyed a large number of books by Barbara Erskine. I have to say that I didn’t feel that this was one of her best books – though reasonably readable.

Kate Kennedy is writing a book on Lord Byron & for a variety of reasons needs somewhere to stay. She rents a cheap cottage in rural Suffolk is a good 20 minute walk through the woods from the nearest neighbours. As she settles down to work strange things start to happen – strange noises and smells with unexplained pil
Nov 24, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Boris Cesnik
Aug 04, 2019 rated it it was ok
It's maybe a plague of all contemporary writers, more focused on getting the job done than passionate about the topic itself.
One can be a good writer, have enough talent to keep the readers from giving up after 100 ages, but it doesn't make an experience.
Is this a book that would have benefited from a good amount of editing? Maybe. It's not that the passages were too convoluted or the language too baroque and obtuse. It's actually quite average and simple. It's the story, the number of character
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Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 3 Mar 22, 2015 11:10AM  
What's the Name o...: SOLVED. Seaside cottage haunted by ghosts [s] 4 135 Jan 06, 2013 03:00PM  

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An historian by training, Barbara Erskine is the author of six bestselling novels that demonstrate her interest in both history and the supernatural, plus two collections of short stories. Her books have appeared in at least twenty different languages. She lives with her family in an ancient manor house near Colchester, and in a cottage near Hay-on-Wye.

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