Reviews

The Death Of Jane Lawrence by Caitlin Starling

*Spoiler free*

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Thank you so much to St. Martin’s Press and Edelweiss for the e-ARC!

Practical, unassuming Jane Shoringfield has done the calculations, and decided that the most secure path forward is this: a husband, in a marriage of convenience, who will allow her to remain independent and occupied with meaningful work. Her first choice, the dashing but reclusive doctor Augustine Lawrence, agrees to her proposal with only one condition: that she must never visit Lindridge Hall, his crumbling family manor outside of town. Yet on their wedding night, an accident strands her at his door in a pitch-black rainstorm, and she finds him changed. Gone is the bold, courageous surgeon, and in his place is a terrified, paranoid man—one who cannot tell reality from nightmare, and fears Jane is an apparition, come to haunt him. By morning, Augustine is himself again, but Jane knows something is deeply wrong at Lindridge Hall, and with the man she has so hastily bound her safety to.

I was certainly intrigued by what this book was about. And the cover is haunting, making me want to read it even more. A practical woman finds herself a practical marriage with a practical man. But what their house holds is anything but practical. It sounded like a twist on the classic haunted house story, and I was very curious to see what would happen and what I would think of it!

I feel like this book is crawling around inside my brain.

Have you ever thought “wow, I wish Interstellar took place in a creepy haunted mansion”? Well, this is certainly the book for you.

This book is extremely solid all the way through. It presents what seems like a classic haunted house story, but it delves into something more. This book gets WEIRD. And I mean that as a huge compliment. I thought it was going to go in a direction that left my liking the book, but not loving it, but it completely veered off into something different. And I did end up loving.

I feel like I can’t say too much about this book without giving away spoilers, and it’s best to go into it with as few spoilers as possible.

I will say that the writing was top notch. It felt secure in a way, like it knew exactly what it was doing. It’s a book the presents a lot of information, and it does so in a way that keeps things feeling organized. I was able to understand what was going on, and keep a firm grasp on the plot and what Jane was trying to do. Plus, it just suits this story incredibly well. It feels haunted itself, weaving around and pulling together this story that is horrifying and terrifying.

I want to talk about the creepy house, but I don’t want to give anything away. I want to talk about Jane, but I don’t want to give anything away. I want to talk about Jane in the creepy house, but I don’t want to give anything away. One of the things this book does is making everything deeper than it looks like on the surface. The smallest things is connected to the deepest roots, and I don’t want to venture too deep and spoil everything that this book holds.

Though, Jane was a fantastic main character. Determined, and a willingness to move forward rooted deep inside her. While I cannot say for sure, I think she was coded as autistic, though it is never mentioned in the book (if I am wrong here, let me know!).

It is a complete twist on the haunted house story. What you’re expecting is the complete opposite of what is going to happen. It creates horror out of the simplest things, it evokes such an emotional creation with a single line, and pulls out terror in unexpected ways. Seriously, the way that this story was crafted around a creepy mansion with something not quite right in it was pure brilliance. Something is not quite right there, and Jane is going to figure out what that is.

Truly, I highly recommend checking this book out if you are into horror at all. It is spectacularly written, with a main character who pulls determination from the deepest dredges of her soul to do what needs to be done. It’s creepy, and it will feel like the book is crawling around in your mind, with it’s horrifying happenings, and creepy mansions. It was amazing.

The Death Of Jane Lawrence comes out October 19, 2021! You can add it on Goodreads and pre-order a copy in the meantime!

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