The House on Vesper Sands
Ladies and gentlemen, the darkness is complete.
Looking for something exciting? Looking for something dark and mysterious? Well look no further.
The House on Vesper Sands is the latest novel from Paraic O’ Donnell and has just been published with Weidenfeld & Nicolson (an Orion imprint) A perfectly pitched tale of suspense wrapped up in a shadowy cloak of darkness.
I most certainly recommend but should you need any more convincing, please do read on for my thoughts…
About The Book:
It is the winter of 1893, and in London the snow is falling.
It is falling as Gideon Bliss seeks shelter in a Soho church, where he finds Angie Tatton lying before the altar. His one-time love is at death’s door, murmuring about brightness and black air, and about those she calls the Spiriters. In the morning she is gone.
The snow is falling as a seamstress climbs onto a ledge above Mayfair, a mysterious message stitched into her own skin. It is falling as she steadies herself and closes her eyes.
It is falling, too, as her employer, Lord Strythe, vanishes into the night, watched by Octavia Hillingdon, a restless society columnist who longs to uncover a story of real importance.
Their paths will cross as the darkness gathers, and will lead them at last to what lies hidden at the house on Vesper Sands.
Welcome to Vesper Sands, a gothic tale that will delight and mystify, that will enthrall and bewitch from the opening pages.
Gideon Bliss arrives from Cambridge to meet up with his uncle. Gideon’s parents tragically died when he was young and it was his uncle who paid for his education and upkeep. The year is 1893, it’s winter-time and the streets of London are dark and murky. Gideon, unable to locate his uncle, finds refuge in a local church and hears whimpering coming from the vicinity of the altar. Gideon is shocked to discover that it is Angie Tatton, a girl he once knew, a girl he once cared deeply for. Angie is clearly not well, dressed in scanty clothing and muttering about rather strange activities and a brightness. Next thing Gideon knows, it’s morning time and Angie Tatton has disappeared. In a blind panic he returns to the last known address he has for his uncle but with still no trace of the man, Gideon becomes acquainted with Inspector Cutter from Scotland Yard, who also resides at the same lodgings.
Esther Tull is a seamstress and occasionally does some private work at a residence in Mayfair. Esther arrives this cold and snowy night on a mission. Esther is in great pain, yet her focus is clear and her intention is purposeful.
A chain of events soon unfurl taking the reader on a eerie journey that captivates, entertains and compels.
I am new to the writing of Paraic O’ Donnell and yes I am now a convert. I love a tale with an edge, one with a lurking and menacing premise. This book provides it in spades. The late 1800s was a time rife with the buzz of the occult, the seances and a desperate search for the afterlife. An atmosphere like this breeds the extremists, the true believers looking for something, looking for the unattainable.
The House on Vesper Sands is packed full with a wonderful collection of characters, each one portrayed with their own little quirks and foibles. A Victorian Gothic novel, The House on Vesper Sands vividly takes the imagination on an ingenious and fantastical journey filled with incredible atmospheric imagery.
I have to mention the beauty of the cover. It’s just striking and captures the essence of the book perfectly. It would make a gorgeous addition to any bookshelf and an equally wonderful gift.
The House on Vesper Sands is just wonderful. It intrigues, it excites, it stirs up the imagination.
But just don’t listen to me…here’s what others are saying
“The most vivid and compelling portrait of late Victorian London since The Crimson Petal and the White” ~ Sarah Perry
“Like the love child of Dickens and Conan Doyle, but funnier than both” ~ Liz Nugent
“Dickens is whirling enviously in his grave. Read by a fire on a cold winter evening” ~ Irish Times
Purchase Link ~ The House on Vesper Sands
Paraic O’Donnell is a writer of fiction, poetry and criticism.
His essays and reviews have appeared in the Guardian, The Spectator, the Irish Times and elsewhere. His first novel, The Maker of Swans, was named the Amazon Rising Stars Debut of the Month for February 2016, and was shortlisted for the BGE Irish Book Awards in the Newcomer of the Year category.
He lives in Wicklow, Ireland with his wife and two children.
Website ~ https://paraicodonnell.com/
Twitter ~ @paraicodonnell