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Little Darlings

3.64  ·  Rating details ·  11,510 ratings  ·  2,510 reviews
“Mother knows best” takes on a sinister new meaning in this unsettling thriller perfect for fans of Neil Gaiman and Grimms’ Fairy Tales.

Everyone says Lauren Tranter is exhausted, that she needs rest. And they’re right; with newborn twins, Morgan and Riley, she’s never been more tired in her life. But she knows what she saw: that night, in her hospital room, a woman tried t
Hardcover, 312 pages
Published April 30th 2019 by Crooked Lane Books
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Average rating 3.64  · 
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 ·  11,510 ratings  ·  2,510 reviews

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Emily May
Mar 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
How could her brain conjure something that seemed so real, something laden with so much horrifying detail, and yet there be nothing at all?

This book is seriously creepy, creative and sad. I think it's a bit misleading that it has found its way to the mystery/thriller section when it is mostly a contemporary with elements (or suggestions) of magical realism. But either way, it's a moving, frightening, psychological portrait of new motherhood, set in the Peak District.

Little Darlings is inspir
Nov 22, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
Oh boy, this was one scary scenario. With echoes of Grimms Fairy Tales, ‘Little Darlings’ will probably give you sleepless nights along with the protagonist!

It’s the wee small hours of the morning on the maternity ward, and even though she’s exhausted, Lauren Tranter lies awake, already worrying about the responsibility of looking after her newborn twins Riley and Morgan - like any new mum she has concerns about her new role in life, keeping these little ones safe and well. Little does she know
Dec 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: arcs-read
Little Darlings is an delightfully eerie story. One that will stick with me long after the final page is turned.

Lauren Tranter has just become a first-time mother of twin boys, Riley and Morgan. While still in hospital, she begins to struggle with her new role.

A terrible hemorrhage post-birth provided an additional trauma and now she finds herself in constant pain, alone and questioning her ability to handle motherhood.

Making matters worse, one night an intruder breaks into her room, a very sc
3.45/5 ⭐

Full review on my Blog: The Dacian She-Wolf 🐺

Thanks NetGalley and the publisher for a free, electronic ARC of this novel received in exchange for an honest review!

me:*gets the blankie and stuffed lion* let the horror begin

...25% reading later...

me: okay...what about a spook then?

...the final half of the book...

me: *hugs tight Leo, the stuffed lion* shh my baby! I won't let that scary unshowered woman take you away from me!

When I started this book I had very high hopes which is strang
Dorie  - Cats&Books :)

Well this one is going to be difficult to write. I would have to classify this as a psychological thriller with the addition of folklore or the supernatural. At any rate it was a truly creepy, turn the pages quickly read. While at first I thought it would be something that wouldn’t be believable, by the first third of the book I was truly scared at what the outcome of this story would be.

As a mom of four I remember the sleep deprived feelings, forgetting what day it ev
Mary Beth
Apr 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Five Creepy Stars

Laura Tranter just had newborn twins. She named them Morgan and Riley. She is exhausted and needs a lot of rest. The night in the hospital room a woman tried to take her babies. and replace them with her own...creatures. Eek! When she tells everyone what happened, no one believes her. They think that she is just imagining things and needs lot of rest. Harper was a police officer on the case. Compulsively creepy and inspired by some of our darkest fairy tales. Each chapter starts
Jan 15, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The book is told from the point of view of Lauren Tranter, an exhausted new mother of twins and Jo Harper a detective who investigates the events that take place concerning Lauren and her twins. The story starts towards the end of Lauren's long labor and the baby boys are named Morgan and Riley. Lauren spends several days in the hospital with them, wondering when her "love" for her babies will appear. Lauren is exhausted, inexperienced, and gets no real support from her husband Ben, at any time ...more
Chelsea Humphrey
Have you ever found yourself writing a review for a book that you didn't particularly enjoy, but found important and/or necessary? Little Darlings was just that read for me, and if you'll bear with me, I'll do my best in unpacking these complicated feelings I have below.

"The child is not mine as the first was,
I cannot sing it to rest,
I cannot lift it up fatherly
And bliss it upon my breast:
Yet it lies in my little one's cradle
And it sits in my little one's chair,
And the light of the heaven she's
chai ♡
yes breakups hurt but have you ever been enjoying reading a book until the ending completely ruined it for you?

Oct 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Let me begin this review with saying that I have absolutely no business reviewing an ARC that doesn't even publish until April 2019 when I have so many ARC's pending soon or better yet the ones I'm behind on BUT the synopsis for this is beyond intriguing and it's October when it's time for all things creepy and spooky and this one seemed a perfect choice for the season.

And I was right! <--- it does happen once in awhile! ;)

Whoa! Little Darlings was an absolute delight to read.

"The child is
Nilufer Ozmekik
Dec 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
Okay, I need lots of cold water, not to drink of course! I need to splash it on my face to clean the stupid shocked expression my face!

First of all: this book is not a thriller. Is it dark? Hell yes!
Is it disturbing? Yeap!
Is it creepy? Hell yeah!

But it should be considered as a dark fiction, an adaption of Welsh fairy tale with its magical, folklore elements. A fairytale about a mother gave birth to her newborn twins who were swapped with changelings. I know this story line is already makes you
Oct 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
"Mother Knows Best"

Lauren Tranter has just given birth to twin boys, Morgan and Riley. Naturally she is exhausted and in need of sleep. But she knows what she saw in her room in the maternity ward - a woman attempting to take her twins and replace them with her own, "it’s only fair". However, when hospital security and the police arrive, they find no evidence of the possible kidnapper. Furthermore, no one believes Lauren, but Detective Harper, a police officer feels that there might be something
Sumit RK
May 31, 2019 rated it really liked it
“She had to play the game, even before she knew what the rules were.”

The best way to describe Little Darlings is as a ‘Dark & Sinister Fairytale’. Melanie Golding has combined elements of a psychological thriller and folklore to perfection to craft a modern dark fairytale. Almost everyone has read a dark folk story in their childhood and this will bring back memories of that.

The writer was able to create a psychological thriller which is atmospheric with a dark and creepy feel to it thr
Creepy, gripping, & atmospheric!

The story is inspired by some deliciously creepy dark fairy tales that adds an extra layer to the sinister, menacing and eerie feel of the book. I absolutely love these types of tales and found myself devouring this one!

LITTLE DARLINGS by MELANIE GOLDING is an unsettling, compulsive and mysterious tale that had me constantly wavering between believing Lauren’s story and thinking maybe she really is just imagining it all. The feelings that I had for Lauren througho
j e w e l s
Mar 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: books-bejeweled

Little Darlings
has caused quite a buzz in the literary world. I read where the UK publisher snatched up the manuscript within 48 hours of submission! A six-figure sum for the book and now news of the movie rights being sold—wowzah, great news for a debut author.

So, what’s the big deal, you say?

As in most psyche suspense novels, we have the requisite unreliable female narrator, her highly sketch husband and an instinctual police detective as the main characters. Lauren wakes up in the
Apr 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2019
4 Creepy, Grimm-esque Stars ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ for Melanie Golding's Little Darlings

Little Darlings is inspired by those dark and creepy fairytales that I love to be scared by! The idea of changelings, a child secretly substituted by fairies in infancy, has always fascinated me. I knew I had to read this book as soon as I heard what it was about and it definitely did not disappoint!

Golding did an amazing job setting the scene in this thriller. It was creepy, dark and suspenseful and kept me furiously tur
Sep 23, 2020 rated it really liked it
Little Darlings by Melanie Golding is a 2019 Crooked Lane publication.

Creepy, atmospheric mix of psychological suspense and supernatural folklore

Lauren is understandably exhausted after giving birth to twins, but enough to imagine she saw a woman enter her hospital room and attempt to swap out her babies? Lauren insists someone is out to steal her twins, but the only person who is giving her the benefit of the doubt is Joanna Harper, the officer who responded to Lauren’s initial emergency call
Lindsay - Traveling Sisters Book Reviews
4 stars!

Creepy, haunting, addictive and atmospheric!

Lauren Tranter is a new mother to twin boys. As many new moms do, Lauren struggles upon her return home from the hospital after giving birth. She is exhausted, she is constantly feeding her babies, she can’t find time for a shower, she can’t possibly think of finding a way to venture out of the house with the boys to get groceries. Her husband works a lot and pushes Lauren to get out of the house with the twins to refresh and reacquaint hersel
Holly  B
An ominous and beautifully written fairy tale filled with touches of mythology and folklore. 

Two little darling twin boys and mother who loves them immensely.

Everything else I was reading took a backseat to this scrumptious tale. I just couldn't stop reading it. It has an addictive quality and the author's skillful writing and magical descriptions pulled me right into the heart of the story. And it does have heart! The mother has so much love for her babies.

The mom of newborn twins, Lau
Sep 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
If Grimms' Fairy Tales and The Changeling had a twin babies, Little Darlings would be those babies.

An unsettling tale of a new mother, Lauren, of twin boys, who finds herself terrorized by a macabre woman attempting to abduct Lauren's babies and replace them with her own. Her account is dismissed by hospital staff, the police, and even her husband as a hallucination attributed to exhaustion, even Lauren herself begins to question her own sanity. The only person that is unconvinced that Lauren ha
Mar 17, 2019 rated it really liked it
Oh my goodness! This book rolled out as a truly creepy read that had me keeping several lights in the house shining bright as I huddled in the corner of my sofa, shaking while I read on.

Lauren Tranter has just given birth to twins, exhausted from a prolonged labor and delivery. Curiously, she keeps over-hearing another woman behind the curtain in the next bed singing to her twins.
Lauren can’t believe it! Two sets of twins in one night? What are the odds? Things take a strange turn however, when
Feb 14, 2019 rated it liked it
I rarely request and read horror novels but I decided that I might try Little Darlings even though the Author was unknown to me. And it was a good choice! The city of Sheffield with its rivers makes a perfect setting for the plot. The story revolves around an alleged kidnapping of infant twin brothers.Their mother, Lorraine Trantner, is convinced some evil power threatens the lives of her newly-born sons but it seems she is unable to prove ther fears. Some personal problems from the past also ma ...more
Caro (Bookaria)
Oct 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
A truly haunting story. I haven't been able to stop thinking about it since I finished it.

Lauren gives birth to twins and taking care of them without any help has been exhausting. Taking her husband's advice she decides to get out of the house and take them for a stroll in the park. She dozes off for a moment and when she wakes up they're gone! 

The police is called and luckily they are found nearby, however, even though these babies look exactly like hers she knows they're not her children. From
Mar 17, 2019 rated it really liked it
3.75 Stars.* (rounded up)

Fairy Tales and Folklore, what a combination!

Imagine being Lauren Tranter, mother to newborn twins, Morgan and Riley. She is excited and nervous to take her babies home and then she get visited by a disheveled, dirty and smelly woman who threatens to steal her babies and replace them with her own “changelings.” Then it happens and Lauren Tranter is beside herself. Detective Jo Harper investigates and is the only one who believes her. The babies don’t just coo and smile
Tucker  (TuckerTheReader)

Many thanks to Crooked Lane Books for sending me a copy in exchange for an honest review
Come away, O human child. To the waters and the wild.
-W.B. Yeats, "The Stolen Child"

This book is not your average thriller. No, no, no! In fact, the fact that this is grouped into the thriller genre is a bit misleading. This book leans more into the magical realism with a buttload of horror. Think Stephen King's It. In fact, I would confidently say that this book was scarier than It. Aside from t
Feb 07, 2019 rated it really liked it
Little Darlings by Melanie Golding is a story about pain, hope, psychosis, fairy tales, motherhood, lies, and drama. It is the type of book where you do not get all the answers and must interpret for yourself what actually happened in the final pages. For some, this will be a great opportunity to decide what is fantasy and what is real. For others, it's a foray into an unknown world of uncertainty. Whether you lean in either direction, one thing's for sure, it's good writing.

Lauren Tranter just
Feb 21, 2019 rated it really liked it
Lauren Tranter had just given birth to identical twin boys, Riley and Morgan. She was worried. She was "still waiting for the rush of love. That one you feel, at once the second they're born..." She felt that she might be "...trapped in her little family unit...". After all, husband Patrick was unwilling to help. He felt Lauren alone must sacrifice and embrace "parenthood". Caring for the twins wasn't actual work, he said.

Lauren is panic stricken upon seeing a grimy faced, dark haired, seemingly
May 30, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition

My thoughts in a nutshell
I slept on it. When I was finishing, I instantly gave it 2 stars. I was really disappointed because of the ending. It could have been my new favorite book. I have mixed feelings about it.

The story is about…
Skip over this point if you don't like the sneak peek.
Lauren has newborn twin boys. One night, in the hospital, she sees an ugly woman who also has twin boys. The creepy woman wants to switch her babies with Lauren's. Lauren called the police, but no one believes he
Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin
I won this off Goodreads and read with the Ladies Of Horror Fiction Group.

It seems most of my friends loved it to death but I liked the idea and a few parts, not the greatest to me unfortunately.

Mel 🖤🐶🐺🐾
Elyse Walters
May 02, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
DS Joe Harper is what made this psychological thriller interesting for me.
Like a Thanksgiving meal, it’s often the side dishes... I enjoy more than the Turkey itself.

Joanne Harper - side dish to the main plot and suspense — was more thought provoking than the main dish, for me.
A kidnapping of twins mixed with creepiness, fairytales and folklore -is the main dish. The main dish kept me reading too...
I was definitely curious to see where things were going.
I wasn’t seriously trying to guess the
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Thank you for your interest in my work. I am a UK based author with a diverse range of interests. You can find more on facebook, twitter @mk_golding and instagram @melaniegoldingauthor

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“Look at someone every day for long enough and you stop seeing what everyone else sees. You start to see what no one else sees, what is kept hidden from most people.” 12 likes
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