BOOK REVIEW: The Haunting of Maddy Clare by Simone St. James


Publication Date: March 6, 2012
Format: Kindle 
Genre:  Horror/ Ghosts

Publisher: Berkley
335  pages
Buy:  Kindle Paperback 


A thrilling debut in women’s suspense - a ghost story set in 1920s England... 

Sarah Piper’s lonely, threadbare existence changes when her temporary-work agency sends her to assist a ghost hunter. Alistair Gellis - rich, handsome, scarred by World War I, and obsessed with ghosts - has been summoned to investigate the spirit of 19-year-old maid Maddy Clare, who haunts the barn where she committed suicide. Since Maddy hated men in life, it is Sarah’s task to confront her in death. Soon Sarah is caught up in a desperate struggle, for Maddy’s ghost is real, she is angry, and she has powers that defy all reason. 

Can Sarah and Alistair’s assistant, the rough and unsettling Matthew Ryder, discover who Maddy was, where she came from, and what is driving her desire for vengeance before she destroys them all? 


Set in 1920's England. Sarah Piper is contracted by Alister Gellis, a ghost hunter to help him speak to a ghost who doesn't like men. His normal partner is away and also not female so he needs her. The locals don't think too much of Gellis and Piper, assuming they are just there to swindle the women who called them. However, it turns out Sarah may be a bit more sensitive to the ghost then either of them counted on.

This book is a bit of a slower burn than the other books I've read by St. James but just as good and just as creepy. I really enjoyed the moodiness of this book, the creepiness of the ghost and the slow uncovering of what happened to Maddy Clare. Gellis and his normal partner Ryder are both veterans of the war, both came away scarred but in different ways.  Piper has invisible scars that hold her back but something about this small town finds her breaking free of those chains.  Everyone has ghosts in their pasts and Gellis, Piper and, Matthew Ryder are no exceptions. As each deals with their demons they also struggle to free Maddy from the vengeance that binds her to this realm. 

Excellent ghost story and creepy read. 

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