I don’t know why, as humans, we enjoy being scared. But we do.
Think of the screams of horror and pleasure on a roller-coaster, or the queues for the fright-fest double-bill horror films. That is pure adrenaline terror.
Then there’s the quiet kind of terror, the kind that creeps up on you and weaves a spell of such believable atmosphere that you can be chilled to the bone. A half-remembered dream or nightmare that stays with you during the day, then - with a sickening lurch to the stomach - springs fully-formed back in the memory.
This book is one of those. I strongly advise you to read it, but maybe read it in the daytime.
It’s Easter 1955 and we enter the crumbling, decaying world of Sugar Hall. Britain is waiting for a public hanging and Dieter Sugar discovers a very strange boy in the red gardens of Sugar Hall. A boy not quite like any other.
Dieter’s mother, Lilia, starts to scrape the mould and moths off the walls of the great house, but she knows that history and the past cannot be so easily removed.
There is a very satisfying and utterly unforgettable conclusion to this fantastic book that will shock the daylights out of you.
This is a dark tale indeed and had me shivering with half-remembered terrors of my own. It’s beautifully written and hauntingly moving. I dare you to read it.
You have been warned.