Friday, March 6, 2009

37 - The Seance; John Harwood

John Harwood’s debut nThe Ghost Writernovel was one of those novels that will go down as a favorite of mine, so naturally when Harwood’s second novel , The Seance was recently released, I could not wait to read it.
The Seanceis set in Victorian England and has all the elements which make for a great gothic mystery. There is a cursed run down mansion, a ghostly suit of armor, lightening bolts that strike out the blue, apparitions and other strange phenomena.
Constance Langton is introduced early in the novel. She grows up in a house marked by death. Constance is a lonely girl living with her distant father, and a mother who has never recovered from the death of her infant daughter. Hoping to help her mother recover from her depression Constance becomes interested in seances. Constance pretends to be the voice of her departed baby sister. Constance hopes her mother will benefits by hearing from the lost child in the afterlife. She then convinces her mother to attend a séance. Unfortunately, this ends with disaster.
Soon after Constance becomes the heir to a mansion. She is advised to sell it sight unseen or to burn it down. Years before a family disappeared at Wraxford Hall and the mansion is believed to be cursed. The story then moves on and the reader learns about the tragic events that happened at Wraxford Hall.
The story is told from three different points of view: Constance Langton, John Montague who advises her to sell the mansion sight unseen. The third point of view character is Eleanor Unwin, a young woman much like Constance with psychic powers that seem to want to destroy her.
The story is full of twist and turns, and sometimes I found it a little tough to keep track of who was who. Despite this The Seanceis a chilling, creepy novel to enjoy, preferably in the daylight.
RATING – 4/5 - COMPLETED – 3/5/09


  1. Great review! This sounds like a book I'd enjoy.

    Diary of an Eccentric

  2. Thanks for stopping by my blog! This one sounds a little scary for me....daylight definitely needed!

  3. Wow, this sounds like a great gothic novel. I absolutely love books like this. Thanks for the great review. I'm going to get a copy of this one.

  4. I want to read this! I loved The Ghost Writer and have been hoping John Harwood would come out with something else. This sounds like it will be wonderful. Thank you for the great review, Diane!

  5. I've got a copy of the Seance, and will probably read it in the next couple of weeks. I'm really looking forward to it!

    I love your blog! See here:

  6. Interesting, I will give that one a go :)


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