S.K. Tremayne's (a pseudonym) last suspense novel, The Ice Twins. (my review) Tremayne's newest release is The Fire Child.
Rachel is excited to move to Carnhallow House with her new husband and stepson. It's a long way from where she started. Rachel's past is alluded to and the details are slowly revealed as the book progresses. But there would be no story without....
A secluded old mansion in need of repair. A widowed, handsome, wealthy owner who has swept his new second wife off her feet. A young stepson who seems to be alright with his new family - until his behaviour takes a scary turn. The shadow of Nina, the dead first wife and mother hanging over everything. The circumstances surrounding her death. The dotty mother-in-law who may know more than she lets on....and more. All the hallmarks of a Gothic tale.
The setting plays a large part in the book - in addition to the secluded house and ominous isolation, there are the mines. Tin has been mined in the Cornwall area for thousands of years. The author has included actual photos of the mines and miners to accompany this fictional tale. The history of these mines is fascinating - I ended up looking up more about them online.
Tremayne does a good job of building the tension. Sightings of Nina, sounds in the house and Jamie's insistence that his mother is alive make Rachel question if she is going crazy. Her husband's behaviour has changed as well. The danger and tension builds and builds, culminating in a great scene in a snowstorm.
But the story continues past that scene. There were a few plot twists at the end that ask the reader to suspend disbelief. I did, but wasn't entirely sold on the ending. The journey there was more enjoyable for this reader. An entertaining light read, good for a dark and stormy night. Read an excerpt of The Fire Child.