On top of the Yorkshire Moors, in an isolated spot carved out of a barren landscape, lies White Windows, a house of shadows and secrets. Here lives Marcus Twentyman, a hard-drinking but sensitive man, and his sister, the brisk widow, Hester.
When runaway Annaleigh first meets the Twentymans, their offer of employment and lodgings seems a blessing. Only later does she discover the truth. But by then she is already in the middle of a web of darkness and intrigue, where murder seems the only possible means of escape…
The Vanishing by Sophia Tobin was published in hardback by Simon & Schuster on 12 January 2017, and is the author's third novel.
I'm delighted to welcome Jo from Jaffareadstoo blog here to Random Things today. Jo is a huge fan of historical fiction, and I was thrilled when she agreed to review The Vanishing as a guest reviewer here on my blog.
Jo blogs, along with her delightful orange cat Jaffa at Jaffareadstoo, please do go and check them out, you can also follow her on Twitter @jaffareadstoo
The Vanishing by Sophia Tobin ~ a guest review by Jo from Jaffareadstoo
Nineteen-year-old Annaleigh Calvert is persuaded to leave her home in London to take up employment as the housekeeper at White Windows, a remote house situated on the Yorkshire Moors, which is owned by the mysterious brother and sister, Marcus and Harriet Twentyman. From the start of the novel, it is obvious that all is not as it seems, and White Windows, far from being the haven that Annaleigh seeks, soon becomes a place of secrets, lies and deadly misfortune.From the start of the novel there is a palpable air of tension at White Windows and this is particularly noticeable within the boundaries of Annaleigh’s association with Marcus and Harriet. It is obvious from the start that the reason for Annaleigh’s employment lies within the total control of this couple but the full horror of their manipulation only becomes evident as the story progresses.The author writes well and creates a genuine feeling of authenticity without ever needing to resort to over exaggerated melodrama. The story is shocking and cruel in equal measure and could be straight from the pages of Wuthering Heights, and whilst Annaleigh bears some similarities with that other ill-fated heroine, Jane Eyre, there is no doubt that Annaleigh's dramatic story is quite unique and singularly told.Those who are familiar with the wild and windswept beauty of the Yorkshire Moors will find much to identify with in this beautifully written gothic tragedy which looks at, not just the way that heritage shapes people and places, but also of the hateful way that women were, so often, badly manipulated by despicable men. Beautifully written from start to finish, there is no doubt that the author has written a compelling story which fires the imagination from the very first page and which doesn’t let up until Annaleigh’s sad and sorry story is completed.
Inspired by research she made into a real life eighteenth-century silversmith, Tobin began to write her first novel, The Silversmith's Wife, which was shortlisted for the Lucy Cavendish College Fiction Prize, judged by Sophie Hannah.
She lives in London with her husband.
The Vanishing is her third novel.
Find out more at www.sophiatobin.wordpress.com
Follow her on Twitter @SophiaTobin1