The Housemaid - Sarah A. Denzil
Reading Challenge Category: Free ARC from Booksprout
Housemaid wanted. Skills required: Discretion, and the willingness to go the extra mile. It seems like the perfect job. Great wages, accommodation provided, and all located within the walls of Highwood Hall, a stunning stately home owned by the Howard family. Not many little girls dream of becoming a maid, but this is an opportunity for me to get back on my feet. And for me to revisit my past... But I soon realise I've made a mistake. The strict housekeeper, Mrs Huxley, watches my every move, emerging from the shadows when least expected. Lord Howard's son, Alex, takes an interest in me, and as a former addict, I find myself drawn to him because I know he's bad for me. There's a general atmosphere of unease at Highwood Hall, from the narrow tunnels laced throughout the sprawling house, to the abandoned north wing, rumoured to be haunted. It's easy to imagine the secrets hidden within these walls, like the secrets I hold close. On my first day, I receive a mysterious package. I open up the pretty gift box to find a miniature doll version of me trapped inside a dollhouse. In this scene I'm dead, lying in a pool of red paint at the bottom of the perfectly recreated staircase. Someone sent this threatening diorama to me, but who even knows I work at the hall? And what do they want? I know only one truth: my perfect job is turning into my perfect nightmare.
I love how different and unique Denzil’s books are, and this was no exception. It was like nothing I’ve read before. It was packed full of suspense and intrigue, and even though you are given tiny snippets as to what could be going on, it’s not until the end of part one that you really start to get the complete picture of what has been happening at Highwood Hall. This is actually a challenging review to write without giving anything away. There is a big ‘what?!?!’ moment that changes everything so no details can be revealed, and everything needs to remain ambiguous! I can say that I really enjoyed it; I couldn’t guess what was going on, the truth, who to trust or which direction the book was going in. It kept you hooked from the very beginning and didn’t let you go right until the end. If anyone has ever visited an old National Trust house, it is quite easy to envisage what Highwood Hall would look like, and there are always the sections that are marked as ‘out of bounds’. I always imagine all the secrets lie behind those doors, and this is exactly how I was envisaging this grand Hall. The writer did an excellent job of depicting everything without going over the top and getting waylaid from the storyline. So, once again, Sarah Denzil has written another corker of a five-star read that I would highly recommend!
- The Housemaid
- Date Started
- 19th July 2021
- Date Finished
- 22nd July 2021
- Buy Now on Amazon