The Crow Garden
By Alison Littlewood
Susan Hill meets Wilkie Collins in Alison Littlewood's latest chiller: mad-doctor Nathaniel is obsessed with the beautiful Mrs Harleston - but is she truly delusional? Or is she hiding secrets that should never be uncovered . . . ?
Susan Hill meets Wilkie Collins in Alison Littlewood's latest chiller. Mad-doctor Nathaniel is obsessed with the beautiful Mrs Harleston - but is she truly delusional? Or is she hiding secrets that should never be uncovered . . . ?
Haunted by his father's suicide, Nathaniel Kerner walks away from the highly prestigious life of a consultant to become a mad-doctor. He takes up a position at Crakethorne Asylum, but the proprietor is more interested in phrenology and his growing collection of skulls than the patients' minds. Nathaniel's only interesting case is Mrs Victoria Adelina - Vita - Harleston: her husband accuses her of hysteria and delusions - but she accuses him of hiding secrets far more terrible.
Nathaniel is increasingly obsessed with Vita, but when he has her mesmerised, there are unexpected results. Vita starts hearing voices, the way she used to - her grandmother always claimed they came from beyond the grave - but it also unleashes her own powers of mesmerism . . . and a desperate need to escape.
Increasingly besotted, Nathaniel finds himself caught up in a world of séances and stage mesmerism in his bid to find Vita and save her.
But constantly hanging over him is this warning: that doctors are apt to catch the diseases with which they are surrounded - whether of the body or the mind . . .
'[An] enjoyable excursion . . . gripping' The Sunday Times
Alison Littlewood is the author of A Cold Season, published by Jo Fletcher Books. The novel was selected for the Richard and Judy Book Club, where it was described as "perfect reading for a dark winter's night." Her most recent novel, The Hidden People, has recently been published to critical acclaim.
Alison's short stories have been picked for Best British Horror 2015, The Best Horror of the Year and The Mammoth Book of Best New Horror anthologies, as well as The Best British Fantasy 2013 and The Mammoth Book of Best British Crime 10. She also won the 2014 Shirley Jackson Award for Short Fiction with her story The Dog's Home, published in The Spectral Book of Horror Stories.
Alison lives with her partner Fergus in Yorkshire, England, in a house of creaking doors and crooked walls. You can talk to her on twitter @Ali__L, see her on Facebook and visit her at www.alisonlittlewood.co.uk.
- Other details
- Publication date:
05 Oct 2017
- Page count:
Jo Fletcher Books
Excellent . . . she creates a chilling atmosphere of skulls, séances, secrets and hysteria — Antonia Senior, The Times
[An] enjoyable excursion . . . gripping — The Sunday Times
A Gothic masterpiece — The Lady
[A] deliciously atmospheric psychological thriller . . . will appeal to fans of Susan Hill and Wilkie Collins — BookRiot
A book which I know I will want to re-read time and time again . . . a brilliant example of historical fiction — The Bookish Bundle
An excellent, chilling, autumn read, all about the dangers of power, obsession, and guilt, this is sure to be another hit — Blue Book Balloon
Eerie and unsettling . . . Alison Littlewood has crafted a sublime blend of the psychological and the supernatural — Starburst
A great seasonal treat — Becky Lea, SciFiNow
A rare treat! I love the idea of novels about madness but it is rare that I find one so well written . . . a fantastic novel and highly recommended! — Life Has A Funny Way of Sneaking Up On You
Alison has been churning out intriguing and clever chilling stories that always manage to raise my heartbeat — Upcoming4.me on Alison Littlewood
There's an amazing sense of place and time in this novel, as Littlewood perfectly captures the literary style, attitudes, and class consciousness of Victorian England — Publishers Weekly on The Hidden People
Hypnotic and intelligent with buckets of atmosphere . . . Littlewood expertly weaves themes of misogyny and mythology into a psychological page-turner that feels both familiar and fresh — SFX
The atmosphere Alison Littlewood conjures up in The Hidden People is absorbing and there's a real sense of foreboding, you feel the fairies might show themselves at any moment. — Irish News
Alison Littlewood is one of the brightest stars in the horror genre at the moment . . . The Hidden People is impeccably written, quiet, evocative horror. It's yet another must buy from Littlewood — This is Horror
Littlewood's dark and gothic style had me mesmerised from the very first page . . . a deeply compelling, fascinating novel, written in a way that had me, the reader, mesmerised also. — Book Babe Review
A masterclass in confusion — Marie O’Regan, SciFiBulletin
For those who enjoy the growing genre of dark Victorian Gothic fiction, this will prove a welcome addition, wrapped about with fogs and spirits and dangerous beauty — The Idle Woman
The Crow Garden flows smoothly, mixing atmosphere and language with effective precision . . . by far Littlewood's best, and by the looks of it, she's only going to get better. — British Fantasy Society