Ready to discover another great book for this 2022? Take a look…

The House of Ashes by Stuart Neville

Genre: Thriller
Publisher: Bonnier Zaffre
Source: Compulsive Readers
Rating: 4/5
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About The Book

For Sara Keane, it was supposed to be a second chance. A new country. A new house. A new beginning with her husband Damien.
Then came the knock on the door.
Elderly Mary Jackson can’t understand why Sara and her husband are living in her home. She remembers the fire, and the house burning down. But she also remembers the children. The children who need her, whom she must protect.
‘The children will find you,’ she tells Sara, because Mary knows she needs help too. Sara soon becomes obsessed with what happened in that house nearly sixty years ago – the tragic, bloody night her husband never intended for her to discover. And Mary – silent for six decades – is finally ready to tell her story . . .


My Thoughts

I think this is one of the most difficult books I’ve read lately; not because of how the story is written but the core of it.
Based in Northern Ireland, it tells the story of two women; Sara and Mary. Their story is separated by 50 years more or less, but the abuse and sadness they have in their life is so thick and powerful that you would want to help them even being fictional characters.
Being a woman and reading about being abused physically and verbally is never easy. Sara has tried to kill herself and her husband, instead of helping her, decides to isolate her in a big house surrounded by nothing. As you can expect, this will not help her and then, she will start discovering the past of the house they just bought. The atrocities that happened there and the only survivor of it, Mary… Their story is connected, from the past through the present, they know what it is to be surrounded but feeling alone. Will their stories have a happy ending even if it sounds impossible? You’ll have to read it to know the answers!
This is a gripping story, dark and poignant; impossible to stop guessing but also had to breathe from time to time while reading it.
Are you ready to discover “The House of Ashes”?


About The Author

Stuart Neville’s debut novel, THE TWELVE (published in the USA as THE GHOSTS OF BELFAST), won the Mystery/Thriller category of the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, and was picked as one of the top crime novels of 2009 by both the New York Times and the LA Times. He has been shortlisted for various awards, including the Barry, Macavity, Dilys awards, as well as the Irish Book Awards Crime Novel of the Year. He has since published three critically acclaimed sequels, COLLUSION, STOLEN SOULS and THE FINAL SILENCE.
His first four novels have each been longlisted for the Theakstons Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year, and RATLINES was shortlisted for the CWA Ian Fleming Steel Dagger.
Stuart’s novels have been translated into various languages, including German, Japanese, Polish, Swedish, Greek and more. The French edition of The Ghosts of Belfast, Les Fantômes de Belfast, won Le Prix Mystère de la Critique du Meilleur Roman Étranger and Grand Prix du Roman Noir Étranger.
His fourth novel, RATLINES, about Nazis harboured by the Irish state following WWII is currently in development for television.