Happy Halloween everyone! If you are looking for the perfect book to read today I highly recommend Anita Frank’s The Lost Ones. The book is totally outside my comfort zone on the level of creepiness. But I was drawn to it immediately and I am so glad I read it. My full spoiler free review is below. However, there is so much to talk about in this book that if you have read it, please DM me to talk through your thoughts or questions.
The Lost Ones by Anita Frank
Back of the Book
Some houses are never at peace.
Reeling from the death of her fiancé, Stella Marcham welcomes the opportunity to stay with her pregnant sister, Madeleine, at her imposing country mansion, Greyswick – but she arrives to discover a house of unease and her sister gripped by fear and suspicion.
Before long, strange incidents begin to trouble Stella – sobbing in the night, little footsteps on the stairs – and as events escalate, she finds herself drawn to the tragic history of the house.
Aided by a wounded war veteran, Stella sets about uncovering Greyswick’s dark and terrible secrets – secrets the dead whisper from the other side…
In the classic tradition of The Woman in Black, Anita Frank weaves a spell-binding debut of family tragedy, loss and redemption.
Review by Kelly Lacey
Drawn to the book by the gorgeous cover and the intriguing hint of creepy journey perfect for Halloween. I dove straight in when it arrived and only stopped reading in the wee small hours when my heart couldn’t take anymore in the dark. Now this isn’t blood curdling scary it’s ghostie scary. Which meant I slept with the light on and picked the book back up as I awoke first thing.
The books starts off a bit like early Downton Abbey. It feels quite cheerie and you have the dynamic of upstairs/downstairs. I was gently nudged and made comfy in a complete blissful fog of the dramatic turn that the story would take. This was no quaint tale, Anita Frank had other things in mind for her readers.
We meet the wonderful Stella Marchham in 1917 as she has returned from the war, heartbroken at the loss of her sweetheart. Consumed by grief she is quite unwell and not her usual self. When her sister calls on her to come to the country and stay with her at Greyswick she goes with the hope a change of scene will help and spending time with her beloved sister Madeleine will be good for her soul. She decides to travel with her maid Annie, who to some is somewhat odd and has some peculiar behaviour.
But all is not as it is seems as she arrives at Greyswick manor. Stella doesn’t know who to trust and what exactly is wrong with her sister?
Anita Frank lulls you into a gentle false sense of security then scares the living daylights out of you in The Lost Ones. Well, if you read scary books a lot you would probably think this supernatural delight is quite tame with no gore or heinous scenes of violence. But for me I really immerse myself with the characters so I felt every creepy bit and it will stay with me for a very long time.
I absolutely loved it and I cannot wait to read whatever Anita Frank releases next. The Lost Ones deserves to be on your top read of 2019 for sure. It would make a wonderful movie or TV drama. I hope the networks pick it up.
At the core of the book is secrets and the power they hold. You really feel the pulse of Greyswick Manor as you turn the pages. It’s powerful size and disgusting opulence make a character in its own right. Alongside a whole host of key characters in the book, so well defined that it was easy to see them and feel intense emotion for my favourites Stella and wee Annie.
If you think historical fiction isn’t really your thing, I would encourage you to still dive into The Lost Ones it isn’t thick with historical detail in fact it would work in any time period I feel with some tweaks.
I hope to spend time with Stella and Annie again in the future. I feel they have so many other adventures to go on.
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