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The Animals at Lockwood Manor

3.41  ·  Rating details ·  2,044 ratings  ·  495 reviews
Some secrets are unspoken. Others are unspeakable . . .

August 1939.

Thirty-year-old Hetty Cartwright is tasked with the evacuation and safekeeping of the natural history museum’s collection of mammals. Once she and her exhibits arrive at Lockwood Manor, however, where they are to stay for the duration of the war, Hetty soon realizes that she’s taken on more than she’d barga
Hardcover, 352 pages
Published March 10th 2020 by Mantle
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Carrie Williams No, this is NOT as good as Kate Morton. And yes, this is an LGBT book if only for the f/f relationship that you could see starting from a mile away!

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Average rating 3.41  · 
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 ·  2,044 ratings  ·  495 reviews

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Amalia Gkavea
''Lockwood had too many empty rooms. They sat there, hushed and gaping, waiting for my mind to fill them with horrors - spectres and shadows and strange creeping creatures. And sometimes what was already there was frightening enough: empty chairs; the hulk of a hollow wardrobe; a painting that slid off the wall on its own accord and shattered on the floor; the billowing of a curtain in a stray gust of wind; a light bulb that flickered like a message from the beyond. Empty rooms hold the possi ...more
Jan 11, 2020 rated it really liked it
Jane Healey writes a dark, disturbing and slow moving gothic mystery with echoes of a number of classic novels, set amidst the background of WW2, the decline of the aristocracy and the social norms, attitudes and expectations of women in this period. It is 1939, 30 year old Hetty Cartwright is a museum curator charged with overseeing the removal and protection of the taxidermy mammal collection at the natural history museum to Lockwood Manor for the duration of the war. She finds her task signif ...more
Nov 25, 2019 rated it it was ok
Giveaway win!

The Animals at Lockwood Manor just was not for me. Nothing happens....

I mean AT ALL!

This book was so boring. The "mystery" wasn't a mystery, it was super obvious who behind all the strange happenings. This book was described as being sexy and spooky but it wasn't either of those things.

Jane Healey has a beautiful way with words but her plotting and storytelling could use some work.
Anna Luce
DNF at 30%

While I understand that the Gothic is an inherently intertextual genre that is derivative by its very nature, I do expect something a bit more innovative from contemporary Gothic fiction.
Sadly, so far into Jane Healey's debut novel and we already have an abundance of on the nose references and little else: there is a red room (Jane Eyre), rumours of a ghost who known as 'the woman in white' (The Woman in White), and a creepy housekeeper + a huge mansion (Rebecca).
The Gothic atmosphere
This is a story of ghosts and monsters.

The bright, colourful cover is a bit misleading, because this is a spooky sort of story. There are animals, sure, but they are stuffed specimens with empty glass eyes that bear witness to the strange happenings at Lockwood Manor.

Plot: Hetty is sent from London to watch over the animals, which have been moved from the museum to Lockwood Manor for the duration of the war, so that they might have a better chance of survival. Only, the manor's lord is a menacin
Jan 21, 2020 rated it really liked it
A creepy gothic manor haunted by ghosts of the past; an unpleasant lord of the manor with hidden secrets; creepy stuffed animals *shudder*. I suppose it’s true that valuable items from London museums were evacuated to prevent destruction in air raids? I enjoyed the story but couldn’t particularly take to the main character Hetty. Many thanks to Netgalley for an arc of this book.

Taxidermy? In my reading? And it didn’t freak me out? Colour me surprised and intrigued.

Okay so, upfront, I loved The Animals at Lockwood Manor. It’s got a really mysterious Gothic Jane Eyre vibe, but set during WW2 and with a sapphic relationship.

Jane Healey is a new-to-me author but I was blown away by her writing style. The pacing is slow and drawn-out (so something to watch out for if that’s not your thing) which gradually builds up all the simmering tension that’s brewing just under the sur
Jul 08, 2020 rated it really liked it
Lockwood Manor has four floors, and ninety-two rooms. Many of these rooms are empty and unused,

“Lockwood had too many empty rooms. They sat there, hushed and gaping, waiting for my mind to fill them with horrors – spectres and shadows and strange creeping creatures”.

With the threat of London being bombed by Germany, the taxidermied animals, many quite rare, are being evacuated from the natural history museum. The mammals are to be kept at Lockwood Manor. Hetty Cartwright, in the role of assistan
Apr 02, 2020 rated it it was ok
This book was described as a Gothic novel set in England at the time of WW 2. It was a must-read for me, and regret I was disappointed. It did establish an eerie feeling, but I felt it was too slow-paced to build up much suspense and was derivative of some of the classic Gothic tales. There was too much description of the women’s nightmares, night terrors, and inner turmoil. I thought this detracted from developing them as full characters, rather than personalities consisting of their instabilit ...more
Chelsey (a_novel_idea11)
Mar 03, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: giveaways-arcs

A unique and wonderfully spun gothic mystery taking place in England during WWII. Hetty is promoted to Director of the Museum at the start of the war. She is tasked with safeguarding and accompanying many of the mammal specimens of the museum to Lockwood Manor where they’ll reside during the war in hopes of being protected from the bombs expected to rain down on London. Lockwood is an enormous estate compromising of 92 rooms, several servants, Lord Lockwood, and his daughter Lucy. The Lo
Dec 24, 2019 rated it liked it
It’s the start of WW2 Hetty Cartwright is a museum curator in London in charge of the Mammal collection. When she is evacuated to Lockwood Manor with the collection to keep it safe against the air raids of London. Lockwood Manor is a big house with so many rooms, with not so many people to fill it. The lady of the manor tragically died left with the lord of the house and his daughter.
When the collection is brought to the house, Hetty struggles to keep up with keeping an eye on the collection and
Desi (Pastel Pages)
Mar 15, 2020 rated it it was ok
Shelves: thrillers
I wanted to love this sooooooo much. I wanted it to live up to the idea presented in the synopsis. I don't know if it's because I read a different (5 star) thriller before this, or if I just wasn't in the mood.. but it just felt too slow the entire time. I usually love slow books, but this one just didn't do it for me. It didn't focus enough on the suspense and thrill, and I was not a fan of the romance. To me, the romance took away from the story and felt unnecessary. I was so close to DNF'ing ...more
Oct 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Though less overtly creepy than A Shadow on the Lens, this book is plenty unsettling in its own right. And it also happens to be historical: set in World War Two, to be exact, though I’ve never read anything quite like it before.

The heroine of the story is Hetty, a young woman sent to Lockwood Manor to be the caretaker of a collection of rare taxidermy animals for the museum that she’s employed by. But things aren’t as simple as they first appear: the animals are vanishing, or moving, the manor
3.5 Stars

The Animals at Lockwood Manor is a historical fiction story, refreshingly starring two complex, queer female leads, who find themselves falling in love in a time of war and oppression.

The story follows Hetty, a strong-willed, professional woman, who finds herself sent to the rural residence of Lockwood Manor at the beginning of the war (WW2), tasked with watching over the natural history museum’s mammal exhibit in an environment deemed safe in wartime.

What should be a sedate stay in th
Sep 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
“It had been living here that had turned my mother and I mad... I was sure that something still lurked here inside these walls, something hidden, something - someone - malevolent and wrong.”

As German bombs threaten London, Lockwood Manor receives some unusual evacuees - the animal exhibits of a London natural history museum, presided over by museum worker Hetty Cartwright.

The house, inhabited by unpleasant Major Lockwood and his fragile daughter Lucy, has seen its own recent tragedies: Lucy’s mo
By turns spooky and sexy, dream-like and uneasy, Jane Healey’s THE ANIMALS AT LOCKWOOD MANOR is the perfect read for fans of Sarah Waters and historical fiction.
Diane S ☔
Throwing in the towel. Just not holding my interest in any way shape or form.
Oct 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I found myself absolutely lost in this book. The atmosphere of Lockwood Manor just pulled me right into the story, following Hetty as she tries to keep the animal collection safe in its temporary home.

As the threat of bombing looms, the extensive animal collection of London's Natural History Museum is evacuated to a safer location at Lockwood Manor. Hetty Cartwright is appointed as the guardian of the collection, and moves alongside it to take up residence at Lockwood Manor. However, almost as s
Natalie Jenner
Mar 23, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A perfect hybrid of Daphne Du Maurier and Patricia Highsmith, THE ANIMALS AT LOCKWOOD MANOR by Jane Healey is a mesmerizing debut. Healey uses beautiful, clean prose to first clinically, then atmospherically, and then finally with a methodical mounting of dread, convey the strange goings-on of a grand British estate house and its even stranger inhabitants. The narrative switches between the assistant keeper evacuated during the Blitz to Lockwood Manor along with the mammal contents of a natural ...more
Sep 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
It's 1939, and a young female museum curator is evacuated with the musems mammal collection to Lockwood Manor, where she will remain for the duration of the war, caring and watching over the collection.

Hetty soon finds herself clashing with Lord Lockwood who looks at the collection as something he can use to his advantage. She befriends Lucy, Lord Lockwood's daughter who is dealing with the death of her mother and grandmother and who is haunted by her past and the secrets held within the walls o
animals at lockwood manor

visit the locations in the novel

This book has all the ingredients I really love in a novel. A gothic manor house in the English countryside, secrets galore within and some cranky old characters you can’t trust. Add to this, something which I would find interesting to see in a museum but frightening to see in a house – stuffed animals – and that ramps up the interest right from the off. Should I read this at night I asked myself? I was not brave enough to in the end and that was a good decision.

Jan 12, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2020, edelweissplus
World War II. A young woman finds herself curator of mammals at the British Museum as more and more men head off to fight. With the threat of air raids, the Mammals are shipped off to a country mansion. Where they are attacked by parasites, move about, disappear...? As the young curator grows increasingly close to the adult daughter living in the mansion, the Lord (and father) grows increasingly threatening.

If you've read much in the way of psychological suspense novels, you can pretty much gues
Sarah W 🍂🍁🌧🌬
Firstly thank you to Netgalley and Pan Macmillan for a this ARC in exchange for an honest review.

I absolutely loved this novel, and found myself thinking about it even after I had put it down.

Hetty Cartwright finds herself at Lockwood manor during ww2 with a collection of exhibits from the National Museum which she has been charged with keeping safe during the blitz. What follows is an intriguing , Gothic tale which I can honestly say went in a direction I was not expecting.

I really enjoyed Ja
MaryannC. Book Freak
DNF - Wanted to like this, but my attention just kept wandering off. I needed a little more substance to the overall mood of the book, wanted the pace to pick up.
Feb 22, 2020 rated it liked it
This is the debut novel by young Scottish author Jane Healey. (An aside here that she is not to be confused with U.S. Bostonian Jane Healey, author of THE BEANTOWN GIRLS and THE SATURDAY EVENING GIRLS CLUB.) Set in 1939, during the beginning of Britain's entry into WWII, the story merely uses the war as an incidental backdrop that's not really essential to the plot.

The basic plot has Hetty Cartwright, employee of a London natural history museum, put in charge of the relocation to outside London
Jodie Matthews
Feb 27, 2020 rated it it was amazing
The Animals of Lockwood Manor is love story and thriller in one, detailing obsession: with work, with ghosts, with people and with the house.

Like all great gothic fiction, Lockwood Manor itself is a character within the story, with one of the narrators, Lucy, saying that she has the house’s name - the manor has a hold over the inhabits: the Lockwood family, the evacuated museum workers, and the host of wild and rare taxidermy museum specimens.
Jane’s writing is intelligent and opulent and lyrica
Heather Nazmdeh
Oct 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A surprising book not reflected by its title. The animals in question are stuffed mammals from a London museum that are evacuated to Lockwood Manor to be kept safe during the war. The person in charge of them is a woman, Hetty, serious, introspective and quite unable to deal with the brash and bullying Lord of the Manor. What develops is a tale of intrigue, unexpected love, spooky happening and a terrific climax. Well written, multi-layered, a satsifying, interesting read.
Kate Smith
Oct 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This was a beautifully written, magical read.
I was swept away with Hettie and her animals, feeling as protective of them as she was. Well written characters, settings to get lost in, and a story that really drew me in.
Highly recommended.
Thanks to Netgalley and Jane Healey for the ARC copy of this amazing book.
I received this book from the publishers via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

When Hetty is appointed a special new director's role in the Museum of London at the eve of England's involvement in WW2, she has to travel to the countryside to the mysterious Lockwood Manor which would be the new home for the stuffed animals and exhibitions normally housed in London. As soon as Hetty arrives in Lockwood Manor, she has to contend with the brutish Major Lockwood, as well as whispering, unhelp
Jul 21, 2020 rated it really liked it
A fantastically creepy gothic read boasting an atmosphere at once satisfyingly familiar to fans of the genre but unique in its details.

I’m not sure why we don’t see more museum-related gothic horror. The setting practically begs for it. Healey uses that idea masterfully. What’s creepier than a bunch of taxidermied animals that seem to move and disappear while making their temporary home during wartime in a crumbly old country manor house? Nothing, except maybe the people sharing the space with t
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Bookish First Rea...: The Animals at Lockwood Manor by Jane Healey 4 14 Nov 16, 2019 03:51PM  

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Jane Healey studied writing in the MFA program at CUNY Brooklyn College. Her short fiction has been shortlisted for the Bristol Short Story Prize , the Costa Short Story Award and the Commonwealth Short Story Prize.

The Animals at Lockwood Manor is her first novel. She lives in Edinburgh.

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