Author: Michelle Paver
Genre: Historical Fiction /Gothic Pages: 304
First published: to be published on 4 April 2019 by Head of Zeus
Edition: e-ARC courtesy of NetGalley and the publisher
1906: A large manor house, Wake’s End, sits on the edge of a bleak Fen, just outside the town of Wakenhyrst. It is the home of Edmund Stearn and his family – a historian, scholar and land-owner, he’s an upstanding member of the local community. But all is not well at Wake’s End. Edmund dominates his family tyrannically, in particular daughter Maud. When Maud’s mother dies in childbirth and she’s left alone with her strict, disciplinarian father, Maud’s isolation drives her to her father’s study, where she happens upon his diary.
Let me start of by saying my rating is a combination of my enjoyment of the book versus the quality of the writing.
The writing is pretty solid. The main character Maud is interesting. With her restricted upbringing and her father’s disinterest, I found myself both rooting for her and pitying her. And yet the plot of the book did not engage me enough to keep my attention. I found myself being distracted from it too easily.
Whether I was not in the mood for a gothic tale or simply because this book was not quite for me, I am not sure, but I simply did not enjoy it as much as I felt I should have done.
I did like the writing style overall, but I found Maud’s father’s journal entries were a bit much at times and I wish the story and plot had unfolded in a different manner.
Having said that, I think there will be plenty of people out there who will really enjoy this novel and if the synopsis sounds up your street, I would recommend giving this one a go.
5 out of 7 stars