The House of Ashes - Stuart Neville
Release Date - September 7, 2021
After her nervous breakdown, Sara Keane's husband has moved them from England to Northern Ireland. They'll live rent and mortgage-free in an old farmhouse his father purchased. In her new home, Sara has no friends, no car, no job, and no chance to leave the home. Damien wants it that way. He wants her to focus on getting well and not dealing with any distractions. She sees it as being a prisoner.
When an elderly woman appears one day, feet bloody, and crying that this is her home and asking about the children, Sara starts looking into the woman's identity and the home's past. She learns that the home has a terrifying history, and that she and Mary have a lot in common, even if Sara doesn't want to admit it. That is all it takes to start bonding with this woman, even if Damien doesn't want her to learn the truth about this home's past.
The House of Ashes is really a sad, haunting mystery that goes back for 60 years and is told through Sara's perspective and Mary's. It's clear to the reader what happened to Mary in the past, that's not a big secret. There are other parts that are a mystery, some are easily guessed while others are a bit more complex.
When all was said and done, this isn't a book that will be easy to get over. There's so much pain for the characters to get through. With a touch of the supernatural, moments of abuse that have you on the edge of your seat hoping they'll triumph, and other moments that leave you outraged for Sara and Mary, it's a powerful read.