House of Echoes

Overview

When Joss Grant inherits Belheddon Hall in Essex from the mother she never knew, she and her husband, Luke move in with their young son, Tom. All Joss knows of the house is that her two young brothers died there many years ago, but local townspeople talk of a curse on both the house and Joss's family.

Something is definitely wrong at Belheddon Hall. White roses are found ...

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Overview

When Joss Grant inherits Belheddon Hall in Essex from the mother she never knew, she and her husband, Luke move in with their young son, Tom. All Joss knows of the house is that her two young brothers died there many years ago, but local townspeople talk of a curse on both the house and Joss's family.

Something is definitely wrong at Belheddon Hall. White roses are found strewn throughout the house, a ghostly voice whispers, "Katherine" and the laughter of young boys echoes through its rooms.

But, after the birth of her second son Joss realizes that someone or something is determined to ruin her family. Her husband and her sister Lyn, who has come to help care for the baby, suspect otherwise. When the marks of violent pinches start appearing on both boys, it seems that Joss is truly responsible for any danger at Belheddon Hall.

Isolated and fearful of losing her family, Joss is on her own in solving the centuries-old curse of the house and saving her sons, before another generation falls victim.

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Editorial Reviews

Kirkus Reviews
Erskine (Midnight is a Lonely Place, 1994, etc.) provides the requisite thrills and chills in a lively ghost story enriched by all the careful research of good historical fiction.

When Jocelyn Grant's husband Luke loses his company—his partner takes off with all the money in their joint business account—the future looks dim for the struggling couple. Until, that is, Jocelyn, who'd been adopted as a child, suddenly learns that she's received an inheritance—the centuries-old family manor that she never knew existed, from a mother she never knew. Belheddon Hall, in Essex, is an imposing, even forbidding house; although the down-at-heels couple are ecstatic at their timely good fortune, their new neighbors' gossip—implying that Belheddon is haunted and that the ghosts show a special interest in young boys—spooks at least Jocelyn, now pregnant with her first child. Joss bears first one son and then, in rapid succession, another, and she becomes increasingly convinced that something evil does linger close by. Luke is highly skeptical and accuses his wife of fanciful imaginings (he even seeks psychiatric help for her), but Joss's best friend David is all too convinced that something does lurk in the Hall, especially when two mysterious, inexplicable deaths occur within days of each other. When Joss and David begin really to explore the history of Belheddon, and to research her mother's life, they uncover more than they bargained for—including a powerful connection to King Edward IV, whose soul, apparently, is not at rest. Jocelyn's family provides a shot of realism as antidote to the eerie goings-on; their concern for Jocelyn as she searches for her past (sister Lyn in particular urges Joss to remember that her real family is the one that raised her) provides an effective counterpoint to the attic wailings and icy white roses of the supernatural scenes.

A successful mélange of family melodrama and fantasy.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781567401790
  • Publisher: Brilliance Audio
  • Publication date: 8/1/1997
  • Format: Cassette
  • Edition description: Abridged
  • Product dimensions: 4.30 (w) x 6.98 (h) x 0.62 (d)

Meet the Author

Barbara Erskine made headlines when she was paid the highest-ever advance for a first novel by an English writer for Lady of Hay. She is also the author of Midnight Is a Lonely Place.

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