A castle. A curse. A dangerous summer. Leo has invited Kate and a few friends to spend the summer at his inheritance, Darkmere Castle: as wild and remote as it is beautiful. Kate thinks it will be the perfect place for her and Leo to get together - but instead, she's drawn into the dark story of a young nineteenth-century bride who haunts the tunnels and towers of the house. And whose curse now hangs over them all.
This was proper, old fashioned Gothic, with its old castle, the sneaking around, the ghosts and shadows. Set in the dilapidated castle, it had a mix of Gothic and romance and plain teenage roughness.
It told of two stories blended together, mixed past and present, between Kate and Ellie. Kate has been invited by Leo, along with the whole group of friends, to spend the summer in his newly inherited castle. But ghosts still haunt the place with terrible secrets and the harsh past.
In the late 19th century, Ellie married a practical stranger, the man who was supposed to marry her sister before her horrific accident. But because of that twist of fate, nothing seems to go right for Ellie at Darkmere. She isn't respected by the staff, her new husband only wants her to produce an heir, and she is completely isolated from the rest of society. Hearing both stories side by side really added to the tension. Things started to make more sense for Kate as we heard from Ellie, especially in terms of the ghosts and the secret passageways.
The two guys complimented each other as well. Both Leo and St Cloud were not all they seemed and much darker than they let on. The trouble they cause, just because they can, affected everyone around them and, especially in Leo's case, hurt their friends. It seemed the castle itself had a horrible effect on anyone that stayed there too long.
All in all, this was an incredible story. The characters really made it for me, especially the parallels between Kate and Ellie; they were all so unique and had a great part in the story and had their own history that blended with Darkmere castle. Definitely an author to watch!
Published 6th August 2015 by Chicken House. Thank you to the publisher for my copy in exchange for an honest review.