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The silent companions
2018
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Summary
"[An] extraordinary, memorable and truly haunting book." -- Jojo Moyes, #1 New York Times bestselling author

Laura Purcell's latest novel, The Poison Thread , is now out from Penguin!

Some doors are locked for a reason.

When Elsie married handsome young heir Rupert Bainbridge, she believed she was destined for a life of luxury. But pregnant and widowed just weeks after their wedding, with her new servants resentful and the local villagers actively hostile, Elsie has only her late husband's awkward cousin for company. Or so she thinks. Inside her new home lies a locked door, beyond which is a painted wooden figure--a silent companion--that bears a striking resemblance to Elsie herself. The residents of the estate are terrified of the figure, but Elsie tries to shrug this off as simple superstition--that is, until she notices the figure's eyes following her.

A Victorian ghost story that evokes a most unsettling kind of fear, The Silent Companions is a tale that creeps its way through the consciousness in ways you least expect--much like the companions themselves.
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Booklist Review
Newly married and newly widowed, Elsie has traveled to her deceased husband's country estate, along with his cousin Sarah, for the duration of her pregnancy. Long neglected, the estate is avoided by villagers, who look suspiciously on it as the site of many strange deaths, the most recent being that of Elsie's husband. Her first night there, Elsie is disturbed by strange sounds from the garret. Upon exploring it, she and Sarah find a wooden cutout painting of a small girl that is unnervingly lifelike, called a silent companion. Afterwards, strange things begin to happen. And the companion it moves. Found in different places throughout the house, it seems to watch Elsie, waiting. Soon Elsie cannot tell if she is going mad, or being hunted. In Purcell's gothic tale, the unknown past is as relevant as the current unknown person or thing that's haunting the estate. A constant question persists: is everything as Elsie thinks, or is her mind the thing being haunted? This perfect fireside read combines all the best characteristics of the gothic genre.--Shaw, Stacy Copyright 2018 Booklist
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