First Sentence: He lay in his lonely little bed, curled up into the smallest shape he could contrive.
Josse d’Acquin and Helewise travel to the home of Josse’s elderly
uncle, a place where Josse always felt the house welcome and sheltered
the family. However, his uncle Hugh appears to be dying, Hugh’s heir has
married a woman who has disrupted the spirit of the house and who, in
spite of the heir planning to adopt her son, she virtually ignores the
boy. The unpleasant feelings only increase with the appearance of a
badly injured stranger.
There is actually a wonderful prologue
that perfectly describes a child’s fear, yet comfort derived by sensing
the spirit of one’s surroundings. This provides a wonderful touch of
mysticism to the story…or not…depending upon whether one believes that a
structure can take on the energy of those who have lived there. This is
followed by a very good introduction of Josse, the members of his
family, and their--and his--history.
Claire is a very
descriptive writer. One feels as though one is traveling with the
characters, both out in the land or throughout the house. Yet, one does
wish there were drawings and diagrams of the manor house. She also
brings the characters to life. There are times where one may feel a bit
frustrated with Helewise, but it is important to not judge her by our
time, and to remember her past, which we learn, but the family never
fully does. Again, this is in keeping with both the character and the
time as pride and vanity would be out of her keeping.
“A Shadowed Evil” is filled with an appropriately nasty character just the right
creepiness, lots of very good twists, and a satisfactory resolution.
A SHADOWED EVIL (Hist Mys/Para-Josse/Helewise-England-1212) – G+ Claire, Alys – 16th in series Severn House – Sept 2015
I am a reader and reviewer of mysteries; a compulsive hooker--the crochet kind, not the street kind--and one who never leaves home without my camera. I can be reached at:
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