It’s getting to that time of year when the nights are getting darker earlier, there’s a chill in the air and Hallowe’en is coming up. It’s also the time when I get brave and add a ghostly story or two to my reading list. How ominous does that front cover of The Whistling look? First, let’s have a look at what the book is about.
About the book
On the remote Scottish island of Skelthsea, Elspeth Swansome takes on a position as a nanny.
Her charge, Mary, hasn’t uttered a word since the sudden death of her twin, William – just days after their former nanny disappeared. But no one will speak of what happened to William.
Just as no one can explain the lullabies sung in empty corridors.
Nor the strange dolls that appear in abandoned rooms.
Nor the faint whistling that comes in the night . . .
As winter draws in, Elspeth finds herself increasingly trapped.
But is this house haunted by the ghosts of the past?
OR THE SECRETS OF THE LIVING . . . ?
Right from the outset the author makes the house of Iskar and the island of Skealthsea sound bleak and cold, a very unwelcoming place. There’s sorrow and mystery from the start with tragic deaths not to be discussed, locked rooms, a grieving child who is an elective mute and the cold and distant aunt who is her guardian.
This is not a fast paced read but rather the author gradually builds up the eeriness and draws you into the narrative. A web of intrigue, secrets, lies and danger bind the elements of this story together.
The Whistling is an atmospheric and unsettling book. Read it with the curtains closed and the lights on…
My thanks to Ella at Penguin Michael Joseph for the opportunity to take part in the blogtour. The Whistling is available now in hardback and ebook editions.
About the Author
Rebecca Netley grew up as part of an eccentric family in a house full of books and music, and these things have fed her passions.
Family and writing remain at the heart of Rebecca’s life. She lives in Reading with her husband, sons and an over-enthusiastic dog, who gives her writing tips.
The Whistling is Rebecca Netley’s debut novel and won the Exeter Novel Prize.