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The Midnight House

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People disappear. Secrets remain... My Dearest T, Whatever you hear, do not believe it for a moment... 1940: In south-west Ireland, the young and beautiful Lady Charlotte Rathmore is pronounced dead after she mysteriously disappears by the lake of Blackwater Hall. In London, on the brink of the Blitz, Nancy Rathmore is grieving Charlotte's death when a letter arrives contai People disappear. Secrets remain... My Dearest T, Whatever you hear, do not believe it for a moment... 1940: In south-west Ireland, the young and beautiful Lady Charlotte Rathmore is pronounced dead after she mysteriously disappears by the lake of Blackwater Hall. In London, on the brink of the Blitz, Nancy Rathmore is grieving Charlotte's death when a letter arrives containing a secret that she is sworn to keep - one that will change her life for ever. 2019: Decades later, Ellie Fitzgerald is forced to leave Dublin disgraced and heartbroken. Abandoning journalism, she returns to rural Kerry to weather out the storm. But, when she discovers a faded letter, tucked inside the pages of an old book, she finds herself drawn in by a long-buried secret. And as Ellie begins to unravel the mystery, it becomes clear that the letter might hold the key to more than just Charlotte's disappearance.


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People disappear. Secrets remain... My Dearest T, Whatever you hear, do not believe it for a moment... 1940: In south-west Ireland, the young and beautiful Lady Charlotte Rathmore is pronounced dead after she mysteriously disappears by the lake of Blackwater Hall. In London, on the brink of the Blitz, Nancy Rathmore is grieving Charlotte's death when a letter arrives contai People disappear. Secrets remain... My Dearest T, Whatever you hear, do not believe it for a moment... 1940: In south-west Ireland, the young and beautiful Lady Charlotte Rathmore is pronounced dead after she mysteriously disappears by the lake of Blackwater Hall. In London, on the brink of the Blitz, Nancy Rathmore is grieving Charlotte's death when a letter arrives containing a secret that she is sworn to keep - one that will change her life for ever. 2019: Decades later, Ellie Fitzgerald is forced to leave Dublin disgraced and heartbroken. Abandoning journalism, she returns to rural Kerry to weather out the storm. But, when she discovers a faded letter, tucked inside the pages of an old book, she finds herself drawn in by a long-buried secret. And as Ellie begins to unravel the mystery, it becomes clear that the letter might hold the key to more than just Charlotte's disappearance.

30 review for The Midnight House

  1. 5 out of 5

    Jonann loves book talk❤♥️❤

    Ellie Fitzgerald is a journalist who is down on her luck. She accidentally comes across a letter from a woman named Charlotte dated 1940. She tries to dismiss the find, but her curiosity gets the better of her. As Ellie begins to search for information, she uncovers Charlotte's heartbreaking mysterious family secrets. The Midnight House by Amanda Geard, is women's fiction. It is a beautiful story of friendship. The timeline alternates between 2019, 1958, and 1940. It took me to 33% of the kindle Ellie Fitzgerald is a journalist who is down on her luck. She accidentally comes across a letter from a woman named Charlotte dated 1940. She tries to dismiss the find, but her curiosity gets the better of her. As Ellie begins to search for information, she uncovers Charlotte's heartbreaking mysterious family secrets. The Midnight House by Amanda Geard, is women's fiction. It is a beautiful story of friendship. The timeline alternates between 2019, 1958, and 1940. It took me to 33% of the kindle e-book to get fully invested in the story. Once I reached that point, it took off on a very interesting journey that I could not quit reading till the end. I really enjoyed the characters and beautifully described scenes. Amanda Geard is a master at making readers feel the experiences she writes about. The Midnight House will be published May 12th. 4 ⭐⭐⭐⭐ Thank you NetGalley and Headline, for allowing me to review this gorgeous book. I appreciate your kindness.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Jinny Alexander

    I've been looking forward to reading this book since I heard about it, and I was not disappointed! It was a really enjoyable read, and the author has very skillfully interwoven three different narratives each adding a layer to the mystery of Charlotte Rathborne's disappearance in the 1940s. In the present day (2019) Ellie returns home to Co Kerry to lick her wounds after work and relationship issues. Whilst there, the journalist in her refuses to stay quiet and she finds herself unravelling the I've been looking forward to reading this book since I heard about it, and I was not disappointed! It was a really enjoyable read, and the author has very skillfully interwoven three different narratives each adding a layer to the mystery of Charlotte Rathborne's disappearance in the 1940s. In the present day (2019) Ellie returns home to Co Kerry to lick her wounds after work and relationship issues. Whilst there, the journalist in her refuses to stay quiet and she finds herself unravelling the threads of Charlotte's story. Meanwhile, we hear the story as it was unfolding, from the parts of the book set in the '40s against a backdrop of war - both that in Ireland, and the blitz in London, and then moving into the late 1950s for another point of view, adding more pieces to the puzzle. I loved this book from the very first pages and was equally invested in all the different major characters - particularly but not exclusively, Hattie, Charlotte, Ellie, and Nancy. I'm not always a fan of multiple points of view in a novel, but this is a perfect example of how well it can be done - it was never confusing or disjointed, and the use of the close third-person narration throughout would have kept the signposting clear for the reader had it been necessary - However, each point of view was so distinct in its voice and so artfully set into its own time that I found myself easily moving back and forth with each character. The overlap in the narration of certain events, but from other points of view, was also very pleasing - it was never repetitive, but included many 'oh, so that's what happened' moments as Ellie would uncover something that we would then 'see' unfolding in real time back in the '40s or '50s. The scenes in war-ravaged London or the 'big house' in Kerry back at a time when Ireland was having its own internal struggles tipped us into a historical drama, and the scenes set in 2019 pulled us into a lovely mix of cosy mystery and almost-romance, but again, I reiterate how skillfully all the threads entwined to make one very cohesive story. I read this fast, while simultaneously it wouldn't end too soon. This book will appeal to many, and will be read across genres and across generations. It is well-researched and beautifully crafted and I wait with anticipation to see what Amanda Geard is going to bring us next.

  3. 5 out of 5

    theliterateleprechaun

    Every once in a while a book comes across my desk and it grabs my heart and won’t let go. This is one of those books. The writing is gold, just like Kerry butter. “It sat as it had for two centuries, on the furze-rimmed water’s edge, its walls hidden behind a thick curtain of ivy, its windows and doors shut to the world. Russet and yellow leaves, discarded from the surrounding woodland, littered the hummocky lawn. A weak puff of smoke rose from one of a dozen chimneys, spires against the mountai Every once in a while a book comes across my desk and it grabs my heart and won’t let go. This is one of those books. The writing is gold, just like Kerry butter. “It sat as it had for two centuries, on the furze-rimmed water’s edge, its walls hidden behind a thick curtain of ivy, its windows and doors shut to the world. Russet and yellow leaves, discarded from the surrounding woodland, littered the hummocky lawn. A weak puff of smoke rose from one of a dozen chimneys, spires against the mountainside.” The book is full of wonderfully descriptive paragraphs, like the one above describing Blackwater Hall, a dilapidated manor holding secrets of the past. It’s easy to see why I was captivated within the first few pages. Like a skilled Kerry tweed weaver, Geard deftly combines the warp and weft threads of her timelines, producing one of the finest mysteries ever written in South Western Ireland. Geard uses the common threads of ‘broken’ and ‘lost’ to unite her 1940 and 1958 timelines with the 2019 timeline. What amazed me the most about the structure was that, like the unity of tweed, I didn’t notice the break between timelines. It flowed unhindered. That’s talent. At the core of this mystery is a woman who vanishes from the estate in 1940 and is presumed drowned in Lough Atoon. Her body is never recovered. Ellie Fitzgerald, the modern day protagonist, is nursing a broken heart while hiding out at her family home, Cahercillin Farm, in County Kerry. She stumbles across an old letter tucked inside an Agatha Christie book she’s purchased from a second hand shop in town. This letter initiates the solving of an 8 decades old mystery as well as the healing of Ellie’s heart. Slowly Ellie unravels the mystery of the girl’s disappearance and introduces us to Lady Charlotte Rathmore, one of the heirs to the Georgian ancestral estate and the girl who vanished one misty night in 1940. The intricately crafted characters, the taut plotting, the unpredictable twists, the visceral atmosphere and the compelling mystery all work together to make this debut novel a 5-star read. The tug and pull between the reader wanting to know more about the secret and the author slowly leaving clues, was set up masterfully! For anyone who’s experienced the pull of my birthplace, you’ll feel your heartstrings tugged. Geard has captured the essence of rural Ireland between the pages of this book. I identified with Nancy, appreciated her loyalty, and loved that she never went anywhere without a book. I enjoyed reading about Nils at The Procaffination and smiled at his menu, and loved reading about Milo. I hope that the author isn’t finished with their story as I’d love to know more! How ironic that the book is to be published on Florence Nightingale’s birthday as it is a nurse, Nurse Abby in St. Thomas Hospital, who, with compassion comparable to Nightingale’s, contributes to a miracle in this story! Amanda Geard is a talented debut author on the rise and Agatha Christie would definitely be proud of her mystery. “Hindsight is the best insight to foresight.” “It was possible to step out of a life, but not to leave it behind.” I was gifted this advance copy by Amanda Geard, Headline, and NetGalley and was under no obligation to provide a review.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Anna

    This novel made for a gripping and engaging read and I found myself being forced to put it down. Not literally, but that thing called life kept getting in the way of my returning to this book. To read my full review of this book please visit my blog at: https://leftontheshelfbookblog.blogsp... This novel made for a gripping and engaging read and I found myself being forced to put it down. Not literally, but that thing called life kept getting in the way of my returning to this book. To read my full review of this book please visit my blog at: https://leftontheshelfbookblog.blogsp...

  5. 4 out of 5

    Mairead Hearne (swirlandthread.com)

    My Rating ~ 4.5* 'Across the dark, slick surface of Lough Atoon, Blackwater Hall hove into view. It was less grand than she remembered, but handsome enough – not quite a pile; more sprawling than imposing. Thick ivy covered the walls, and its blue slate roof was scattered with a dozen chimney pots. Three rows of white sash windows – some of them open against the warm evening – peppered the front elevation. French doors led directly on to a sloping lawn that ran a hundred yards to the reedy edg My Rating ~ 4.5* 'Across the dark, slick surface of Lough Atoon, Blackwater Hall hove into view. It was less grand than she remembered, but handsome enough – not quite a pile; more sprawling than imposing. Thick ivy covered the walls, and its blue slate roof was scattered with a dozen chimney pots. Three rows of white sash windows – some of them open against the warm evening – peppered the front elevation. French doors led directly on to a sloping lawn that ran a hundred yards to the reedy edge of the lough’ The Midnight House by Amanda Geard was published May 12th with Headline Review and is described as ‘an unforgettable and spellbinding story of secrets, war, love and sacrifice’. I am absolutely delighted to bring you all my review today for this quite astonishing debut novel that completely captured my attention. Here is a simple fact – I love historical fiction and always have. There is something very fascinating about being taken on a journey back to a time when society held different beliefs and expectations and in The Midnight House Amanda Geard does this extraordinarily well. What makes it even more extraordinary is that Amanda Geard is Tasmanian born, a blow-in to Ireland, settling in Co. Kerry on the west coast of Ireland, a number of years back. The Midnight House is set primarily in Co. Kerry and Amanda Geard’s grasp of the Irish way of life, both past and present is really impressive. Also we do visit London during the Blitz which is depicted with a great sense of anguish and desperation adding to the authenticity of the story. The Rathmore estate, Blackwater Hall, is situated near the beautiful and extremely scenic Kenmare Bay in Co. Kerry. Since the 1790s the house has been home to generations of the Rathmore family, some more generous to their tenants than others. In the 1940s it was the home of Charles Rathmore and his wife Niamh. They lived there with their three children, Hugo, Theodore (Teddy) and Charlotte. It was a time of great change in society overshadowed by the Second World War, particularly for women. Charlotte wanted to embrace this new world and to live independently of her family’s wealth and all it encompassed but her family had very different ideas for her. In 1940 tragedy struck Blackwater Hall when Charlotte suddenly disappeared. No trace left but a shattered pearl necklace near the lake and traces of blood on an oar. Initially the IRA are blamed but with no obvious reason, and no evidence to the contrary, no arrests were made. Over time the case was left cold, the truth never revealed. It’s 2019 and Ellie Fitzgerald returns to her home village in Kerry, a journalist in disgrace. Moving back in with her mother is her only option as she tries to gather her thoughts but Ellie is embarrassed and is wary of bumping into old school friends and acquaintances. She ventures into a local charity shop, where a buddy of her mother works, leaving with a box of books under her arm. Later that evening as she casually looks through the books as a distraction from her disturbed thoughts, she comes upon a letter, one written in 1940. Clearly the letter doesn’t belong to Ellie and with no intention of invoking any of her journalistic skills, Ellie makes a fast and simple decision to return the letter to where it obviously belongs, Blackwater Hall. With no initial motivation to dig deeper, Ellie soon, unwittingly, finds herself caught up in a mystery that appears to gather momentum. When the dots begin to join up Ellie becomes engrossed and a little obsessed to finally uncover the truth behind an age-old enigma surrounding the Rathmore family. Ellie Fitzgerald is a wonderful character. When she arrives home she is clearly hurting but Ellie was born and bred in Kerry and, once she relaxes a little back into her roots, she is quite surprised by how quickly she is accepted back into the community. As Ellie uncovers each piece of the past, the chapters unfold, transporting the reader back to the 1940’s and 1950’s. The Rathmore family is one with many secrets. There is a veil of sadness hanging over them that has shadowed generations for years. Is it time for the truth to out and for peace to finally descend on this troubled family? Mixing Ellie’s personal present-day predicament with the past creates an enthralling story that is extremely engaging at all times. I must of course mention the cover of The Midnight House which immediately catches the attention. What secrets lie on the other side of that keyhole? The colours are warm and very inviting, leading the reader right into the story with an imaginary key and a desire to uncover the truth. The Midnight House is a completely immersive experience. Amanda Geard has spun a breath-taking story with multiple threads and outstanding characters. The different eras are seamlessly interwoven as the reader jumps between 1940, 1958 and 2019. Amanda Geard was inspired by ‘the rugged landscape and rich history of Co. Kerry’, and this is very much evident in the stunning and very vivid descriptions depicted throughout. “Here on the westernmost fringe of Europe, where jagged fingers of purple sandstone plunge dramatically into the angry froth of sea, both my story and I found a home…And this wild landscape, part tamed by generations of rough hands, is the perfect mirror in which communities like this can view themselves: vast histories stretching back generations, their imprints left on the land." – Amanda Geard The Midnight House is packed full with intrigue and sumptuous descriptions. Enchanting, enveloping and cleverly written, The Midnight House is the perfect read for all fans of historical fiction. It has all the ingredients you could possibly need, with a sprinkling of Kerry magic on top of a tightly woven mystery.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Sue

    This story begins in 2019 when journalist Ellie Fitzgerald, beaten down by a hoped for exposé into property fraud in Dublin that has destroyed her career, and the heartbreak of a failed relationship, returns to her childhood village of Ballinn in rural County Kerry. Hiding out in her widowed mother's farmhouse, afraid of the gossiping villagers who are bound to have heard all about her disgrace, and telling herself she is just 'back for a bit', Ellie really has no idea where her life goes from h This story begins in 2019 when journalist Ellie Fitzgerald, beaten down by a hoped for exposé into property fraud in Dublin that has destroyed her career, and the heartbreak of a failed relationship, returns to her childhood village of Ballinn in rural County Kerry. Hiding out in her widowed mother's farmhouse, afraid of the gossiping villagers who are bound to have heard all about her disgrace, and telling herself she is just 'back for a bit', Ellie really has no idea where her life goes from here. But then she discovers an old letter inside a second-hand book that used to belong to Blackwater Hall, the local seat of the Rathmore family, written by young Lady Charlotte Rathmore who disappeared in 1940 and was thought to have died. The significance of this clue into an unsolved mystery pique's Ellie's curiousity, and although she is reluctant to get involved in an investigation so close to recent painful events, she finds herself drawn into finding out what happened to Charlotte. The information she discovers reveals deep secrets linked to Blackwater Hall, and brings her close to the surviving members of the Rathmore family in a way that helps them all move on from the past. The story follows three storylines: Ellie's pursuit of the truth about Charlotte's disappearance in the present; the lives of Nancy Rathmore and Charlotte her rebellious sister-in-law in the 1940s; and the narrative of Hattie Rathmore, Nancy's daughter, in the 1950s; and it's one of the best multi-timeline novels I have ever had the pleasure to read. Amanda Geard pulls you in from page one with Ellie's retreat to sleepy Ballinn through hints of the trauma that has brought her to seek solace in her childhood home, and treats you to wonderful descriptions of the countryside and the delightful characters that live thereabouts - almost as if you are there amongst all the delicious sights, sounds, smells, and accompanying prying eyes and wagging tongues of rural Irish life. She then takes your hand and leads you onwards through a novel which is rich in compelling mystery and a wealth of fascinating history, spinning so many lovely themes - politics, class, the struggle for women's freedom, heart warming community, love, loss, and gentle romance. As the past opens up under Geard's deft touch, London in the dark days of the Blitz also comes alive, and we are there at every moment when the tense fallout of the secret that Nancy believed lay buried in the rubble of her bombed-out wartime home leads to further tragedy for the Rathmore family in the 1950s. Weaving seamlessly back and forth between the storylines, through cleverly conceived mirrored moments that delve into the shared experience of the women in this tale, Geard links together pivotal episodes using personal possessions, letters, photographs and archive material uncovered by Ellie and her wonderful little gang of local researchers to gradually unfold the mystery of Charlotte's disappearance, showing how the consequences of her actions echo through time. I loved how this was done so beautifully, with so many aspects of the historical and contemporary timelines bleeding into each other, bringing everything together into one story when all the myriad pieces of the mystery fit into place. There are some incredible women in this book, and they shine out with their warmth and the strength they display in protecting the ones they love - and not just the central cast of Ellie, Nancy, Charlotte and Hattie. There are so many glorious supporting characters too, especially Ellie's 'Mammy' Moira, Moira's incorrigible bestie Bernie, and the long-lived and deeply wise Tabby who has been there through all the trials and tribulations that are uncovered over the course of the tale. I completely loved everything about this beautiful book, held spellbound by a many-layered and evocative story that has absolutely everything to keep you absorbed from the first page to the last. I cannot wait to see what comes next from Amanda Geard!

  7. 4 out of 5

    Nicola Smith

    My imagination was immediately captured by the inky image of a lake and a house beyond it on the cover of The Midnight House. I started to wonder what secrets it could hold. Well, quite a few as it happens. This is a triple timeframe story with family intrigue from 1940 and 1958 rippling down into the present day storyline in 2019. Ellie Fitzgerald is running away from a scandal in Dublin in 2019 and she retreats to her family farm in Ballinn, County Kerry. There, a letter found between the pages My imagination was immediately captured by the inky image of a lake and a house beyond it on the cover of The Midnight House. I started to wonder what secrets it could hold. Well, quite a few as it happens. This is a triple timeframe story with family intrigue from 1940 and 1958 rippling down into the present day storyline in 2019. Ellie Fitzgerald is running away from a scandal in Dublin in 2019 and she retreats to her family farm in Ballinn, County Kerry. There, a letter found between the pages of a book lead her to investigate the disappearance of Lady Charlotte Rathmore in 1940 from the grounds of nearby Blackwater Hall. This is exactly my kind of book. As is usual, initially I was most interested in the storyline in 2019, and I was fascinated and enthralled by the digging that Ellie does into the past and the way that it was revealed. But, as the story progressed, I found myself becoming just as engrossed in the other two strands, set in the past, and I found it was like I was putting together a jigsaw, with it all starting to make sense as more pieces were gathered. I loved that sense of collecting and collating memories and facts to build a picture of the past. There's a family tree at the beginning. I was excited by this and envisaged lots of turning back to see who everybody was. In fact, I didn't need to do that. Ok, there weren't a huge amount of people to keep track of but I think it was more because the characters were so beautifully portrayed and realistic. I was totally invested in their lives, both the main players and also the more minor characters, such as the owner of the little coffee shop that Ellie frequents. If, like me, you're a Kate Morton fan waiting for her to write her next book then look no further than The Midnight House. Amanda Geard has written a captivating debut encompassing a mystery which unfolds between the covers, family secrets and female friendship in a spellbinding setting. I absolutely loved it.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Kerry https://likeherdingcatsblog.wordpress.com Robinson

    Told across three timelines and narratives, The Midnight House is a spellbinding tale of friendships, family and mystery all wrapped up in Blackwater House. In the present (2019), Ellie has moved to her childhood home in Balinn after a series of unfortunate events in her life and discovers a letter written by Charlotte Rathmore whose family lived in Blackwater House and who was presumed dead in the 1940s. Charlotte’s voice in the late 30s/40s tells the story of a woman trying to find her place i Told across three timelines and narratives, The Midnight House is a spellbinding tale of friendships, family and mystery all wrapped up in Blackwater House. In the present (2019), Ellie has moved to her childhood home in Balinn after a series of unfortunate events in her life and discovers a letter written by Charlotte Rathmore whose family lived in Blackwater House and who was presumed dead in the 1940s. Charlotte’s voice in the late 30s/40s tells the story of a woman trying to find her place in the world against a very traditional family and expected lifestyle. Part of the plot is told From London via Harriett, Charlotte’s niece and all the different timelines tie very neatly together. I love multiple timelines as they always add an element of suspense and tension for me. I enjoyed unravelling little snippets of each lady’s story but then having to wait for the next bit. It was like a jigsaw with all the pieces slotting together slowly to provide a full picture later on. It was also a lovely historical journey through time looking at the position of women in society and in families against a rich backdrop of historical events. The plot was woven together skilfully, taking the reader on a journey and I loved the mystery aspect too about Lady Charlotte’s disappearance. It wasn’t a fast-paced plot but the richness of description and character development meant that I got completely lost between the pages and was 100 percent wrapped up in the lives of these women. County Kerry, Balinn, Blackwater Hall and London were brought to live by vivid description of the setting, community and characters within it. As a reader you become part of that community and setting, living and breathing in everything the characters do. The Midnight House is a breath-taking novel of 3 women and how their lives entwine. It is full of wonderful characters and it’s addictive reading. Everything flows perfectly and it all comes together at exactly the right time for the reader.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Ashley

    The cover of the book is what 1st drew me. Then I read the synopsis and was intrigued. I love dual time novels and throw in a mystery, even better. This is the 1st book i have read by the author and I thoroughly enjoyed it. The book is set over several time periods. 1939/40, 1958 and 2019. The story is about the mysterious disappearence of Lady Charlotte Rathmore, presumed acceidentally, or purposely drowned in 1940. Then in 2019 Ellie Fitzgerald has returned home to lick her wounds from a faile The cover of the book is what 1st drew me. Then I read the synopsis and was intrigued. I love dual time novels and throw in a mystery, even better. This is the 1st book i have read by the author and I thoroughly enjoyed it. The book is set over several time periods. 1939/40, 1958 and 2019. The story is about the mysterious disappearence of Lady Charlotte Rathmore, presumed acceidentally, or purposely drowned in 1940. Then in 2019 Ellie Fitzgerald has returned home to lick her wounds from a failed relationship and carreer. As a journalist she is intrigued when she stumbles across a letter written by Charlotte and decides to investigate her disappearance. The story takes place in Ireland and London during the War and in Ireland in the present day. I have to say that I guessed the mystery before the end, but it did not dampen my enjoyment of the book. I really loved Nancy, Charlotte and Ellie’s characters. They were strong women who overcame some forbidding obstacles. I recommend this book and look forward to reading more from Amanda Geard in the future. Thanks to Netgalley, Headline, and the author for the chance to read and review this book.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Trina Dixon

    The beautiful cover and synopsis intruiged me, I love dual timeline novels and this one certainly didn't disappoint, in fact its set over 3 timelines, 1940, 1958 and 2019 but at no point did it become confusing. A story of an aristocratic family and secrets they prefer to stay hidden, a long lost mystery The words just flow off the page and is a delight to read. Many thanks to Netgalley and Headline and especially Amanda Geard for writing such a wonderful novel The beautiful cover and synopsis intruiged me, I love dual timeline novels and this one certainly didn't disappoint, in fact its set over 3 timelines, 1940, 1958 and 2019 but at no point did it become confusing. A story of an aristocratic family and secrets they prefer to stay hidden, a long lost mystery The words just flow off the page and is a delight to read. Many thanks to Netgalley and Headline and especially Amanda Geard for writing such a wonderful novel

  11. 4 out of 5

    Angela Thompson

    The Midnight House by Amanda Gerard 1940: In south-west Ireland, the young and beautiful Lady Charlotte Rathmore is pronounced dead after she mysteriously disappears by the lake of Blackwater Hall. 2019: Decades later, Ellie Fitzgerald is forced to leave Dublin disgraced and heartbroken. Abandoning journalism, she returns to rural Kerry to weather out the storm. She finds a faded letter in a book. In this past year I've been reading a lot of dual time line books , and this one has to be up there w The Midnight House by Amanda Gerard 1940: In south-west Ireland, the young and beautiful Lady Charlotte Rathmore is pronounced dead after she mysteriously disappears by the lake of Blackwater Hall. 2019: Decades later, Ellie Fitzgerald is forced to leave Dublin disgraced and heartbroken. Abandoning journalism, she returns to rural Kerry to weather out the storm. She finds a faded letter in a book. In this past year I've been reading a lot of dual time line books , and this one has to be up there with the best I really enjoyed the story and thought the characters meshed perfectly together. This is a brilliant read .

  12. 5 out of 5

    Janet

    What a captivating and unforgettable debut. It is up there with the best historical fiction I have read, for the storyline as well as the quality of the writing. Ellie and Charlotte are going to be staying with me for a long time. Ellie returns home ‘for a bit’ following the end of her relationship and the loss of her job as a newspaper reporter following an exposé she wrote on her personal blog. She finds a letter in the back of an old book she picks up from a charity shop, written over 80 years What a captivating and unforgettable debut. It is up there with the best historical fiction I have read, for the storyline as well as the quality of the writing. Ellie and Charlotte are going to be staying with me for a long time. Ellie returns home ‘for a bit’ following the end of her relationship and the loss of her job as a newspaper reporter following an exposé she wrote on her personal blog. She finds a letter in the back of an old book she picks up from a charity shop, written over 80 years ago. She is drawn in to the mystery of what happened to Charlotte, the author of the note and can’t help wanting to find answers. The author takes us on a journey between 1940, 1958 and the present time, and as Ellie’s investigations begin to reveal answers we are taken back to find out what actually happened. There are mysteries to be solved, family secrets galore, and a coffee shop I would love to visit! The characters and descriptions are vivid and I was completely engrossed in all three of the streorylines and couldn’t wait to pick up the book whenever possible! I was a bit devastated when I reached the end and can’t wait to read more from this very talented author.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Barry. S

    Fantastic book. A multi-timeline mystery that skips seamlessly between wartime London, 1950’s County Kerry and Ireland in the modern day. Slightly outside of my usual genre choices, I’m glad I came across this as it’s really beautifully written, blending humour, drama and sadness. The landscapes and settings are particularly well done; modern day village life in rural Ireland is painted just as expertly as wartime London, with a richness and colour that keeps you tuning the page and you could al Fantastic book. A multi-timeline mystery that skips seamlessly between wartime London, 1950’s County Kerry and Ireland in the modern day. Slightly outside of my usual genre choices, I’m glad I came across this as it’s really beautifully written, blending humour, drama and sadness. The landscapes and settings are particularly well done; modern day village life in rural Ireland is painted just as expertly as wartime London, with a richness and colour that keeps you tuning the page and you could almost imagine yourself in County Kerry! A terrific read, will certainly be looking for more from this author.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Kindle Worm

    4.5 ⭐️‘s Ellie, a journalist, has returned to Ballinn, County Kerry in a disgrace, little does she know that she will soon be completely engrossed in a death that happened eighty years ago. When she finds a mysterious letter in a book that changes everything about the case, Ellie delves in deeper, interviewing family, friends and acquaintances as she draws ever closer to solving what really happened to young Charlotte Rathmore and the secrets of Blackwater Hall. Written in three different time fr 4.5 ⭐️‘s Ellie, a journalist, has returned to Ballinn, County Kerry in a disgrace, little does she know that she will soon be completely engrossed in a death that happened eighty years ago. When she finds a mysterious letter in a book that changes everything about the case, Ellie delves in deeper, interviewing family, friends and acquaintances as she draws ever closer to solving what really happened to young Charlotte Rathmore and the secrets of Blackwater Hall. Written in three different time frames (1940, 1958 and 2019) and told in three different voices, Geard draws the reader in early and the pages turn quickly. Unlike many dual timeframes, Geard goes a step further with three and all three are equally compelling which is truly a difficult feat! Well done! Thank you to Headline Publishing and NetGalley for an ARC of this book.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Anne

    Heartfelt story entwining history and mystery with present day.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Kirsty ❤️

    I really enjoyed this duel (three-al? Not mentioned in the blurb is Hattie’s story from 1958). The events of 1940 which affect those of 1958 and are explored in 2019 are a genealogists dream. Tracking down a mystery disappearance and what happened to Charlotte Rathmore. The book feels like it’s written with love. You really grow to love all the characters involved and what they are willing to do for love. It’s not a fast novel but it is a page turner. I found it took me a while to read. I normall I really enjoyed this duel (three-al? Not mentioned in the blurb is Hattie’s story from 1958). The events of 1940 which affect those of 1958 and are explored in 2019 are a genealogists dream. Tracking down a mystery disappearance and what happened to Charlotte Rathmore. The book feels like it’s written with love. You really grow to love all the characters involved and what they are willing to do for love. It’s not a fast novel but it is a page turner. I found it took me a while to read. I normally have a fast reading style. I think the pace of the book brought me to its level rather than me trying to push through and read as fast as possible. Not a negative. I think I took more in that I maybe would have done otherwise. It’s a compelling read by a debut author. I’m looking forward to what she does next

  17. 5 out of 5

    Aria Harlow

    I really enjoyed this book. I enjoyed the dual timeline as it really brought extra depth to teh story and I enjoyed the storyline. The writing was good and the characters were well developed, relatable and believable. It was a completely captivating book that gripped me right from the start and engaged me the whole way through. I really enjoyed it.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Wendy(Wendyreadsbooks) Robey

    What a beautifully written story. I loved this from the very beginning. I loved the three different timelines and felt they flowed wonderfully through the story. Nancy and Charlotte were great main female characters - so strong in their own way and to have gone through so much together. Their relationship was so strong. Ellie’s story was a great aside for the mystery of the house and I really enjoyed how she used her investigative skills and found herself again in search for the truth.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Liz Fenwick

    I loved this page turning book. Beautiful

  20. 4 out of 5

    Beth

    The Midnight House is one of the most captivating books I’ve read this year. Ellie is a disgraced journalist who has moved back home with her mother. Despite telling herself she’s not there as a journalist, she finds herself drawn to a long-buried mystery. In 1940, Lady Charlotte Rathmore was pronounced dead after she disappeared at Blackwater Hall. Told over a dual timeline and following three different women, this beautifully written story reveals what happened to Charlotte. I was worried I’d The Midnight House is one of the most captivating books I’ve read this year. Ellie is a disgraced journalist who has moved back home with her mother. Despite telling herself she’s not there as a journalist, she finds herself drawn to a long-buried mystery. In 1940, Lady Charlotte Rathmore was pronounced dead after she disappeared at Blackwater Hall. Told over a dual timeline and following three different women, this beautifully written story reveals what happened to Charlotte. I was worried I’d find it hard to keep track of three timelines as we follow Nancy Rathmore in 1940, her daughter, Hattie, in 1958 and then Ellie in 2019. However, the narrative effortlessly flows between each character and a compelling story unfolds. While I enjoyed all three narratives, I became so attached to Nancy and Charlotte. It’s clear from the start they have a strong bond and would do anything for each other. I loved how fierce these two women were and how protective Nancy was of Charlotte. I loved how fiery Charlotte was and how she knew exactly what she wanted out of life. She refused to conform to society’s expectations of women and decided early on that she wanted to escape it all. I absolutely adored her. Ellie is another strong character who stood her ground when she uncovered a massive scandal. She refused to be cowed by more influential people and covered the story anyway. While she unfortunately lost her job and her enthusiasm, it leads to Charlotte’s mysterious disappearance and we get to see Ellie thrive once again. My favourite part of this entire story is how it focuses on three strong and independent women. The men are background characters and we really get to see these women take control of some difficult situations. I was left in tears at the end as I really came to love these characters and the mystery of Charlotte’s disappearance was so beautifully written that I couldn’t hold back my tears. Amanda Geard has created a brilliantly moving story that captured my full attention and my heart. I can’t wait to see what she writes next. *I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review.*

  21. 5 out of 5

    Stephanie H

    A brilliant dual timeline novel. A very gripping read that was extremely hard to put down, which led to a binge read and finished within a day. Highly recommend

  22. 4 out of 5

    Carly Rushforth

    I was over the moon to be accepted by Netgalley to have an advanced copy of this debut novel by Amanda Geard to read and review. Almost from the first page I read I knew this book was going to be one of those that I would not be able to put down, it just pulls you in with an invisible thread. I don’t usually like dual timeline books but this story is so captivating i didn’t even notice that it was dual timeline because I was so engrossed in the story, so if you’re like me who doesn’t normally lik I was over the moon to be accepted by Netgalley to have an advanced copy of this debut novel by Amanda Geard to read and review. Almost from the first page I read I knew this book was going to be one of those that I would not be able to put down, it just pulls you in with an invisible thread. I don’t usually like dual timeline books but this story is so captivating i didn’t even notice that it was dual timeline because I was so engrossed in the story, so if you’re like me who doesn’t normally like dual timeline please take my word for it that you’ll not even notice and you’ll just enjoy it. I loved everything to do with this beautiful story from the moment I begun reading. Both timelines are so inviting I couldn’t stop reading until I found out what happened to everyone, especially Charlotte, Ellie and Nancy those three are the characters I loved the most. The beautiful Irish setting blew me away I was so invested in the little Irish village and all it’s inhabitants both past and present. This book is incredible, if you love a historical fiction book that has dual timelines is a mystery/ thriller and has war, heartbreak and romance in this book is for you. Thanks again to NetGalley the Publisher and the Author for the advance copy of this book to read and and review .

  23. 5 out of 5

    K

    "...the secret to a good life is to learn what matters and what doesn't." Lovely, lovely story. I took a chance on The Midnight House, not having read anything by Ms. Geard before. I was totally invested in the story and couldn't wait to get back to it every night. Fabulous female characters, they are what the story(ies) revolves around. It's not disappointing that the male characters take a secondary role. You can inhale the coffee aroma, feel the caffeine hit your system, and see the butter mel "...the secret to a good life is to learn what matters and what doesn't." Lovely, lovely story. I took a chance on The Midnight House, not having read anything by Ms. Geard before. I was totally invested in the story and couldn't wait to get back to it every night. Fabulous female characters, they are what the story(ies) revolves around. It's not disappointing that the male characters take a secondary role. You can inhale the coffee aroma, feel the caffeine hit your system, and see the butter melting off the homemade scone. Geary provides such a sense of place - in Kerry - love love love this book! P.S. Thanks to #Netgalley for the ARC.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Emma Curtis

    Thank you to the publishers for my ARC. This is a wonderful book to get your teeth into. Vividly written, the author has a way with words, the descriptions as gorgeous as paintings. The story takes place between 1939 as war breaks out, 1958 when the affect of the conflict on families are still raw and 2019. In 2019 Ellie, a journalist, goes home to Kerry, after her relationship and working life break down. She is soon drawn into a local mystery. Why did the beautiful, spirited daughter of a weal Thank you to the publishers for my ARC. This is a wonderful book to get your teeth into. Vividly written, the author has a way with words, the descriptions as gorgeous as paintings. The story takes place between 1939 as war breaks out, 1958 when the affect of the conflict on families are still raw and 2019. In 2019 Ellie, a journalist, goes home to Kerry, after her relationship and working life break down. She is soon drawn into a local mystery. Why did the beautiful, spirited daughter of a wealthy family vanish without trace. Relationships are complex, characters flawed, there is a real poignancy to this story of love, betrayal, misguided meddling and redemption.

  25. 4 out of 5

    travelsalongmybookshelf

    The Midnight House - Amanda Geard 1940: In South West Ireland the beautiful Lady Charlotte Rathmore is pronounced dead after she disappears at the edge of the lake at the edge of Blackwater Hall. In London Nancy Rathmore, grieves her death and then receives a letter with a secret she must keep and changes her life forever. 1958: Nancy’s daughter Hattie overhears secrets growing up at Blackwater Hall, which she must carry her whole life and has consequences for everyone. 2019: Journalist Ellie Fitzg The Midnight House - Amanda Geard 1940: In South West Ireland the beautiful Lady Charlotte Rathmore is pronounced dead after she disappears at the edge of the lake at the edge of Blackwater Hall. In London Nancy Rathmore, grieves her death and then receives a letter with a secret she must keep and changes her life forever. 1958: Nancy’s daughter Hattie overhears secrets growing up at Blackwater Hall, which she must carry her whole life and has consequences for everyone. 2019: Journalist Ellie Fitzgerald flees home to Kerry in disgrace. But on discovering an old letter tucked in a book from Blackwater Hall, she is drawn into a mystery. Unlocking secrets, the letter is a key to Charlotte’s disappearance and so much more. ‘For every mile of road, there are two miles of ditches, Ellie. Two sides. Two stories.’ A story told across generations, full of detail, intriguing mystery, secrets and heartbreak. I sometimes feel a multiple timeline novel has one strong line and the rest are filler but in this case every line was strong, each played it’s part and kept me glued to the pages. The characters were all so well drawn, I didn’t find a weakness, all fully rounded and walking off the page to greet me. I especially loved Tabby and her sayings: ‘Windy days are not for thatching.’ ‘Hindsight is the best insight to foresight.’ ‘He who keeps his tongue keeps his friends.’ Simply put , I adored this book. I became totally subsumed into its story, I felt for the characters, I felt like I knew them, it was touching, compelling beautiful and so atmospheric. If you like Kate Morton, you’ll love this! ✩✩✩✩✩ Thanks to Emily at Headline Review and Amanda Geard for my copy of this book and spot on the tour

  26. 4 out of 5

    Jess Clayton

    I love, love, loved this book! It’s been a while since I stumbled upon a new author who completely blows me away and makes me excited to recommend it! This is a beautifully written novel full of vivid imagery and interesting characters. It contains a compelling mystery with a near perfect execution of dual timelines. The atmospheric quality of writing captivated me from beginning to end. It felt as if I were there in rural Ireland in both 1940 and 2019! I loved the way the author used a note tuc I love, love, loved this book! It’s been a while since I stumbled upon a new author who completely blows me away and makes me excited to recommend it! This is a beautifully written novel full of vivid imagery and interesting characters. It contains a compelling mystery with a near perfect execution of dual timelines. The atmospheric quality of writing captivated me from beginning to end. It felt as if I were there in rural Ireland in both 1940 and 2019! I loved the way the author used a note tucked in an old Agatha Christie as the impetus for the mystery. The clues were revealed slowly yet provided the right amount of information to make the puzzle fit together perfectly. I love the “family secret” type mystery, especially if a big old house is involved. This may well be in my list of top reads of 2022! I hope Amanda Geard continues to provide more of this type of atmospheric writing. 5 stars!! Kate Morton better look out!

  27. 5 out of 5

    Jane

    The Midnight House is a beautiful book, a story of a missing woman spanning three timelines, all expertly entwined. The mystery of missing Charlotte and the relevance to the present day is captivated with members of the family and locals in the village in County Kerry, where the setting is vividly and exquisitely drawn. I am always attracted to books where the setting is a character in its own right, especially somewhere I have never been myself. I would highly recommend this gorgeous book, it ha The Midnight House is a beautiful book, a story of a missing woman spanning three timelines, all expertly entwined. The mystery of missing Charlotte and the relevance to the present day is captivated with members of the family and locals in the village in County Kerry, where the setting is vividly and exquisitely drawn. I am always attracted to books where the setting is a character in its own right, especially somewhere I have never been myself. I would highly recommend this gorgeous book, it has many mysteries and themes tangled in its pages, the history of Ireland, women's standing in society then and now, and how decisions made in the past still hold relevance and pain to those who live today. Amanda Geard is a wonderful writer and I'm looking forward to hearing about her next book.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Jackie

    The Midnight House by Amanda Geard is a captivating mystery laced with family secrets, war, love and sacrifice. In short, Ellie Fitzgerald discovers a letter tucked inside an old book, intrigued she begins her mission to unravel the mystery. I enjoy a good historical novel and this one is cleverly told in 3 different timelines…I think a family tree added at the front of the book would have been useful. It’s a fascinating story, very evocative of the 1940’s in Ireland with it’s political narrativ The Midnight House by Amanda Geard is a captivating mystery laced with family secrets, war, love and sacrifice. In short, Ellie Fitzgerald discovers a letter tucked inside an old book, intrigued she begins her mission to unravel the mystery. I enjoy a good historical novel and this one is cleverly told in 3 different timelines…I think a family tree added at the front of the book would have been useful. It’s a fascinating story, very evocative of the 1940’s in Ireland with it’s political narrative. Beautifully written with plenty of twists and turns, you’ll love this engrossing family story. Big thanks to Amanda Geard, Headline and NetGalley for this eARC which I chose to read in return for my honest review.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Colleen Maclennan

    A seasoned journalist knows when they have uncovered a story that has greatness. Even thought Ellie was sacked from her job in Dublin and a relationship ended she never lost her journalistic instinct to find the truth and asks the hard questions. Returning to her rural home in Kerry she finds out the truth about Charlotte Rathmore life and the people connected to her. While delving into Charlotte ‘s life she makes some discoveries about her own. This book depicts a small Irish village and its in A seasoned journalist knows when they have uncovered a story that has greatness. Even thought Ellie was sacked from her job in Dublin and a relationship ended she never lost her journalistic instinct to find the truth and asks the hard questions. Returning to her rural home in Kerry she finds out the truth about Charlotte Rathmore life and the people connected to her. While delving into Charlotte ‘s life she makes some discoveries about her own. This book depicts a small Irish village and its inhabitants in the early 1940’s and again in 2020 or about. The mysterious disappearance of a young lady makes this book an interesting read.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Alva

    Well, this is an absolute belter of a read! Squished me inside and out as I meandered through this dual-timeline mystery of families, secrets, and friendships. Wonderful storytelling by Amanda Geard with a true Irishness showing throughout the story. From 1940 to 2019 with 1958 popping up in between we learn the secrets of Blackwater Hall. Reluctant but determined, Ellie is thrown into finding out more about what lay behind and within the walls, to find out the true tragic story of Charlotte Rat Well, this is an absolute belter of a read! Squished me inside and out as I meandered through this dual-timeline mystery of families, secrets, and friendships. Wonderful storytelling by Amanda Geard with a true Irishness showing throughout the story. From 1940 to 2019 with 1958 popping up in between we learn the secrets of Blackwater Hall. Reluctant but determined, Ellie is thrown into finding out more about what lay behind and within the walls, to find out the true tragic story of Charlotte Rathmore. I loved this book! Brava! Amanda Geard.

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