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The Haunting of Maddy Clare

3.88  ·  Rating details ·  11,698 ratings  ·  1,889 reviews
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
Paperback, 318 pages
Published March 6th 2012 by Berkley Books
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Jamie I re-read this book about a month ago. It really is a great read and its on of those hard to put down books because I wanted to know what was going to…moreI re-read this book about a month ago. It really is a great read and its on of those hard to put down books because I wanted to know what was going to happen. All in all I enjoy this author and they way that she writes. I gave her 5 stars for this, hope you enjoyed it too!(less)

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The Haunting of Maddy Clare is a 2012 Berkley publication.

Now, THIS is my kind of ghost story!!

Sarah Piper agrees to step in as a temporary assistant for Alistair Gellis, an independently wealthy war veteran, who spends his time hunting ghosts. He already has an assistant named Matthew Ryder, but the case they are called in to investigate requires a feminine touch. Why? Because the ghost in question, is Maddy Clare, a nineteen -year- old girl who committed suicide in a barn, and she really, r
Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin
This was so good and creepy and sad!

The barn was only a small distance behind the house, down a rough-worn path. The mist had not dissipated; it curled around my ankles and calves as I walked, and I was glad I had kept on my coat and hat against the chill. There was no sound but the scratch of my footsteps and the dripping of water from the trees. I longed to hear even a single birdsong, but none came.


Abruptly, the thumping stopped. A low sound cane from the window, the echo of an angry gro
Jul 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
A hauntingly good book that delivers with chills, creepy scenes and mystery!

Alistair Gellis, a ghost hunter, has hired Sarah Piper from a temporary agency. Initially Sarah is concerned but finds she is also intrigued by the sense of adventure and the handsome man who proposes an eerie job description to her. Low on funds, and intrigued, Sarah finds that she cannot refuse the position as she needs the money. She isn't sure if ghosts even exist, but money is money, so she agrees to help him invest
Nov 03, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: horror, 1920s
Twenty-five-year-old Sarah Piper gets a call from the temporary agency that she works for. A male writer is requesting an assistant and he is asking for a female. Sarah is to meet him at a coffee house in Soho, London.

Sarah goes to the coffee house and meets Alistair Gellis, a young, handsome man. He tells her he documents ghosts. A vicar contacted Alistair recently because the vicar had tried to exorcise a ghost and failed. The ghost physically attacked him. It seems the ghost really dislikes
Jul 14, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018, library-book
Full review up!!
Another great book by Simone St. James!!

I went into this book hoping that the writing was just as strong as The Broken Girls. I read that book earlier in the year and loved St. James's writing! And The Haunting of Maddy Clare was good as well!

The Haunting of Maddy Clare starts off with Alistair Gellis requesting help from a temp agency. Sarah Piper works for the agency and agrees to meet with Alistair. Alistair wants to hire Sarah because only a woman can communicate with the gho
This book deserves a good review, however, I am too exhausted to write one. I just arrived back home from a two-day road trip covering a couple of thousand kilometers, and really need some sleep. The book was great.

Paranormal, combined with a romance and a haunting tale of an angry ghost. Not my usual genre, but a great diversion from the normal paths. I spent many hours riveted to this tale. Holding my breath, devoid of much-needed oxygen by involuntary choice, a subconscious act in overdrive,
Oct 11, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another wonderful story from Simone St. James! This was the perfect book for the Halloween season. I must thank my Goodreads friend, Julie, for writing such an amazing review for this that I immediately downloaded it and I was not disappointed.

Sarah is a young, poor woman living in London after WWI and getting by on temporary work. One day she is asked to assist Allistair Gellis, a professional ghost hunter, in exorcising the spirit of Maddy Clare from the barn in which she hung herself. The re
Oct 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: reviewed
"The Haunting of Maddy Clare" was a great Halloween read. This is a solid four-star ghost story with a side of romance, and my first but definitely not my last novel by Simone St. James. It takes place in England just after World War I. The ghost hunter and his assistant met in a care facility after being injured in the war. They're good people who both have physical and emotional scars. Sarah, an orphaned woman working in London as a temp, has been hired for this haunting because the ghost hate ...more
Nov 05, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ebook, ghosts, mystery
When Sarah accepts an interview thru a temp. agency, she had no idea it would lead to a job working for two handsome young men and encountering a revengeful ghost haunting an old barn. Set in post WWI England, the engaging beginning of this debut novel by Simone St. James combines some spooky thrills with a mystery to solve and a romance to enjoy. (if you enjoy romance)

The imperative need to unravel the past surrounding Maddy's sad and short life made for a fast read and entertaining ghost story

4 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Imagine ghost hunting in the 1920s! A very meek girl needs a job at her temp agency and she goes to a meeting to discuss what this will entail at a coffee shop.
Her life changes from that point on! I loved this. You see Sarah getting stronger and more on point as a character with every sentence; more sure of herself and even her assignment and co-workers. That was great. Then you have her two companions, Alastair; the boss, and his usual assistant; Matthew.
To top it all off we have on
Once again, a Simone St. James book read in one sitting. My eyes are now blurry (did I forget to blink?), and I am surprised and disappointed to realize that I am back in the real world. A full review may follow at some point, but I loved this, ghost, romance, mystery and all.
Nikki Joyce
Jun 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
4.25 chilling stars!

My first encounter with Simone St. James was her book, The Broken Girls, which I read a few months back. I knew then that this was an author I needed to revisit, and now after reading The Haunting of Maddy Clare, it is official.… Simone St. James has definitely found a new fan.

I have been a fan of ghost stories since I was a kid. And I admire authors who take on the daunting task of writing those stories, as it seems like such a difficult genre to tackle. And after reading
Diane S ☔
Feb 21, 2012 rated it liked it
3.5 Entertaining story for those who love ghost stories and mysterious happenings. Really liked the characters and there are plenty of creepy moments, especially the crows, they were particularly eerie. Especially because I have never gotten over seeing the birds when I was younger. Liked following the story to find out who Maddy really was and what had happened to her.
The Haunting of Maddy Clare was just an ok read for me. I was somewhat disappointed for a couple of reasons, the first being that although there were a lot of ghost scenes in this book, they were not really all that creepy to me. I found the ghost scenes in An Inquiry into Love and Death to be creepier, even if there were fewer of them. The second thing I disliked was the insta-love/lust. I wasn't crazy about the romance in An Inquiry into Love and Death, but it was even worse here. The reason I ...more
 photo sarah_zps7757bee6.jpg

Sarah Piper lives a fairly private life in London during the 1920's. She soon receives a call from a temp agency requesting her assistance in working alongside Alistair Gellis, a traveling writer who has a deep interest in the supernatural. Sarah's life is soon flipped upside down when she is led to assist in helping an angry 'manifestation' to the other side.

 photo barn_zps81ed242a.jpg

Since Maddy Clare loathes the presence of men, Sarah is sent into the barn that she haunts alone. Sarah isn't well-equipped for wh
Nov 01, 2020 rated it liked it
I love her writing style, I just found the plot predictable, but still an enjoyable read.
Mlpmom (Book Reviewer)
Sep 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: kindle-books
Absolutely loved this in every way imaginable. It had just the right amount of creepiness and romance and I absolutely loved the historical setting.
Completely perfect for this time of year when I always love a good mystery mixed in with a good ghost story.
Khanh, first of her name, mother of bunnies
An excellent ghost story with some truly terrifying moments. This is Simone St. James' first book, and I actually read her second book first before going back to this one. They are not connected, although they have a similar setting and sets of characters. Their similarity in no way detracted from my enjoyment of both books.

It is 1922, and 24-year old Sarah Piper leads a lonely, very threadbare existence. It is hinted that there was a traumatic event in her past, and as such, she seems to be goi
Oct 22, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audible, horror, ghost, tragic
Late one evening a distraught young girl covered in dirt, shows up at the door of an Old English manor. The compassionate family takes pity on her, takes her in and administers her medical attention. When the local police conducted an extensive search and turn up no information surrounding the missing girl, the generous family keeps her on as a maid. Mute and a bit teched she still managed to win the heart of the Mistress and housekeeper, however, the Lord of the manor never acknowledges that sh ...more
Lynn Spencer
I'll try not to ramble too much, but I'm working on a sleep deficit caused by staying up way too late finishing this book. I read this book after both Susanna Kearsley and Molly O'Keefe recommended it to me, and what a wonderful read it was! As others have commented in their reviews, I did solve the mystery rather early on, but that didn't diminish my enjoyment of the book one bit.

The story is told in the first person and Sarah Piper is a delightful narrator. Not only do we get treated to a sto
Magdalena aka A Bookaholic Swede
Sep 18, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-2016
I've been wanting to read more of Simone St. James books since I read Lost Among the Living a couple of months ago. I love books with either very much paranormal or just a hint of it. And, ghosts I find is a fascinating subject. So, I hoped that The Haunting of Maddy Clare would work for me.

The Haunting of Maddy Clare has all the right ingredients for a great story. A vengeful spirit, a budding love story, a mystery, and great characters. I did find Sarah Piper a bit too timid for my taste at f
Oct 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I had a hard time putting this story down. So as soon as I was done with work I got a glass of water and sank into this story.

This story is set after The Great War. Two of the main characters deal with shell shock, known today as PTSD. And shell shock is a major theme in this story. I liked that St. James put a face to a trauma that many people have to deal with everyday.

And yes there is a ghost in this story. But you need to read the book to find out what kind it is.
Nov 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
4-1/2 stars!

The Haunting of Maddy Clare is exactly as scary as I was hoping it would be. I’ve been wanting to try this author’s work and I’m so glad I finally did. I will be making my way through the rest of her books.

“I am filled with unnamable horror, a fear that seems primal, dredged from the depths of my brain like a long dead body from a deep lake.”


This book has all the elements for a proper scare. The timeframe, an old barn, crows, ghost hunters, and of course haunting!

Oct 12, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2016
Well, after reading two books by this author this month and loving them, I can safely say that I will buy every book Simone St. James writes. This had mystery, ghosts, a gothic feel to it, and a little romance. It was all executed brilliantly.
Mar 17, 2012 rated it liked it
Joint review originally posted on The Book Smugglers

First Impressions:

Ana: Thea was supposed to be doing a solo review of The Haunting of Maddy Clare but then last week I was having a moan about not wanting to read any of the books on my TBR and then Thea was like, “What do you want to read dude” and I was like, “I think I am in the mood for a historical novel, possibly Horror as well. Maybe.” and she was like, “Dudette, why don’t you read Maddy Clare with me” and I looked it up and it was a his
”Little girls don’t matter. Little maids don’t matter. Poor little dead girls don’t matter. And now I’m hungry again.”

Synopsis: A She-Man hating ghost is driving the residents of a little English village absolutely batshit crazy; so the only obvious solution is to hire ghosthunters to tell her to leave. Intense scares and casual fuckery ensues.

Gloom, Doom, and a Whole Lot of Gray: You might think that this book is going to be just a jolly good ghost haunting trip into th
Nicole Ritz
Jun 17, 2012 rated it it was ok

Although I prefer a little more subtlety in ghost stories -- the book's spirit made her presence known early on and spectacularly -- the book started off strong. There was some nice period detail, and the premise was interesting enough that I was willing to accept it on its own terms.

THEN the author threw in an anachronism that ruined much of my enjoyment.The story was set in 1922. Sarah compared Evangeline to Norma Shearer, claiming she'd seen all her movies. Although Norma Shearer had begun a
Leslie Ray
Jun 25, 2021 rated it really liked it
A really good and creepy ghost story with a nice romance thrown in. Sarah Piper is on her own and works in London for a temp agency. She is assigned to help an author, Alistair Gellis, who is also a ghost hunter. However, it is his assistant, Matthew Ryder who intrigues her and who she falls for. Thrown into the mix the very vengeful and violent ghost, Maddy Clare, who hung herself at nineteen. Clever readers will soon guess what happened to her and the culprits behind it. However, for readers w ...more
The Haunting of Maddy Clare by Simone St. James Nothing is more perfect than a ghost hunt across the English countryside in the 1920’s. Suspenseful, wicked, sexy – this novel is everything that gothic and paranormal lovers crave. A must read!

Sarah Piper’s lonely, threadbare existence becomes an adventure she could never have predicted when she accepts an appointment to meet with her possible future employer. Sarah works for a temporary agency in London and is currently in-between jobs, so the unusual request to meet a stranger in a coffee
Oct 22, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Oh, this is at least a 4 star for enjoyment. 3.5 star rounded up for all else. The style is easy to read, yet a trifle melodramatic. BUT, isn't that what you want in a ghost story? I do.

In this one the haunt is an active protagonist, no second tier apparition. And the town in the era following the Great War completely reverberates the response to the ghost's known and fully experienced suffering.

But what I liked best about this one was that Sarah, Matthew, and Alistair all reflect the dissonan
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2021 Reading Chal...: This topic has been closed to new comments. The Haunting of Maddy Clare 10 39 Mar 17, 2021 11:01AM  
Horror Aficionados : The Haunting of Maddy Clare by Simone st. James 9/21/20 39 37 Oct 05, 2020 07:15AM  
Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 7 Mar 04, 2015 11:38AM  

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Simone St. James is the USA Today and New York Times bestselling author of The Sun Down Motel, The Broken Girls and The Haunting of Maddy Clare, which won two RITA awards from Romance Writers of America and an Arthur Ellis Award from Crime Writers of Canada. She wrote her first ghost story, about a haunted library, when she was in high school, and spent twenty years behind the scenes in the televi ...more

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