What she finds is terrifying. Dark Echo isn't just unlucky, it's evil. It was built for Harry Spalding, a soldier and sorcerer who committed suicide yet still casts his malevolent spell nearly a century after his death.
©2009 F.G. Cottam; (P)2009 Oakhill Publishing Ltd
"[W]hile F. G. Cottam's complex, tautly atmospheric thriller delivers plenty of chills, its principal characters are pleasingly human." (Daily Mail)
"It's all ghostly hokum, of course, but jolly good hokum." (Guardian)
The story is amazingly creepy, with a true villain
Anything by the same Author.
No, this was my first but I would gladly listen again.
One of my favourite ghost story authors.
I'm always going to read a Cottam book; I love his mixture of the uncanny and history. Like his other stories, this one contains a series of mysteries that span generations and continents and the historical research is detailed and absorbing.
The author has an exceptional talent for building tension with settings. His descriptive writing is truly outstanding.
The main protagonist in this story, unlike his others, is delightfully ill-equipped to deal with the mounting danger. I was expecting another ex-military man, so this was a pleasant surprise. I found him extremely likable. His wife however, is very much like Cottam's other 'good women': smart, beautiful, loyal and driven. Like many of Cottam's other novels, Dark Echo boasts some wonderful and endearing secondary characters.
Dark Echo has two flaws: is that it suffers from what many suspense/horror stories suffer from: one inexplicably willful character who ignores every possible sign of impending disaster and blithely stumbles onwards. That being said, the protagonist's father - the catalyst who pulls the other characters towards the final conflict - is a very well-drawn portrait of a captain of industry born of humble origins.
Its second flaw is pacing. It does begin to lag somewhat about 3/4s of the way through the story. The ending, although not completely surprising, is spectacular.
If you like thriller/horrors with smart characters and really intricate historical mysteries, you're going to love this book.
Gareth Armstrong is one of those readers that makes you laugh - but doesn't necessarily mean to. He reads at a fair old clip, misjudges the pitch of sentences so that unnatural emphases get added to certain phrases (which he then gamely rescues by suddenly dropping his pitch to 'seamlessly' retrieve the situation) and then exacerbates a relatively poor show by actually misreading words to often comic effect. For example: 'he suffered from a congenial heart disease'. I'm guessing this should have been 'congenital' as I know of no heart diseases which are particularly congenial. Another corker was 'she retrieved the bag that compromised her luggage' - again, I'm thinking that should have been 'comprised'. I'm blaming the reader because I can't believe that an author and numerous subs and editors would let such sloppy prose through. However, F G Cottom is so horribly verbose, maybe they got so far and just thought 'sod it.'
Basically, a fairly bad novel and read by someone who thinks that Yorkshire, Cumbria and Lancashire all have the same, slightly retarded-sounding, accent. Grating - avoid unless you have a great admiration for hammy acting and a fondness for crappy prose.
"Good solid yarn"
Another fine tale from FG Cottam. As with his other works, the supernatural elements are set within a normal modern day lives of the protagonists. I particularly liked the way the author places a few hints about the fate of the characters well before the story is concluded.
I liked Gareth Armstrong's narration.
"Good but not great"
I enjoyed this book but I thought the ending came in a bit of a rush at the end
The narrator has a pleasant voice and he does move the story along at a fair old pace. I had no problem with his accents but I do agree with one of the other reviewersthat his delivery could have been better. He seemed to miss pauses that needed to be in a story telling ie when you change tempo or persons. As i said at the beginning the end felt very rushed as if the author was trying to cram everything in at once to tie up all the loose ends I also felt that the author had planned a different ending only to change his mind nearer the end of the story.Having said all that I did enjoy it and had finished listening to it in a couple of days where as I am still going back to other books I have downloaded !
"fantastic listen- a proper ghost book"
I have just finished listening this book and thoroughly enjoyed it - so much so that I did not want the book to end. A proper ghost story with good characters and good ghosts!
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