Stephanie (Steph) and Grant Burgess believe they’ve found their forever home and move into it with their two young children, Charlie and Amelia. She’s a stay-at-home mother and he’s the primary breadwinner working mostly from home. Though they love the house, it requires some updating and commence with the remodeling. Steph discovers some initials carved into one of the walls and they’re later visited by the original owners who match those initials. They just wanted to see their old house out of nostalgia. However, it’s after they leave that Steph and the contractor find a hidden wall behind the one they demolished, along with some disturbing messages that send her on a mission to find out what actually happened in this home.
the heart of the story…
It was a bit odd when those previous owners showed up as they hadn’t lived there in decades but it was after Steph discovered that hidden wall and then those messages that I became just as suspicious as she was. The story is told from both Steph and Grant’s points of view and they provide interesting contrasts. He’s more skeptical, which offers some balance, but he’s also engaging in some shenanigans of his own. It just added to the intrigue as I vacillated between the two about whether there was “something there” there.
Two narrators were used for this story and both captured the personalities of their respective characters. I heard Steph’s growing tension and Grant’s nonchalance, exactly as the story seemed to demand. They provided strong performances.
the bottom line…
The author is known for his twisty stories and this one certainly lives up to that expectation. I thought I’d identified the twist and I did but only one aspect of it. The other conundrum was that I liked those previous owners and was conflicted about the possibility of them being guilty of something. This was a short tale but one with a lot of intrigue and mystery. The ending offered more than I expected and that’s a good thing. Glad I had the opportunity to listen to it as well since it just enhanced the whole experience.
- Release Date: November 22, 2022
- Narrators: Dierdra Whelan & Adam Goodwin
- Audio Length: 5 hours, 5 minutes
- Publisher: Tantor Audio
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(Thanks to Tantor Audio for my complimentary copy. All opinions are my own.)