We are currently making improvements to the Audible site. In an effort to enhance the accessibility experience for our customers, we have created a page to more easily navigate the new experience, available at the web address www.audible.com/access.
The Séance | [John Harwood]

The Séance

Constance Langton grows up in a household marked by death, her father distant, her mother in perpetual mourning for Constance's sister, the child she lost. Desperate to coax her mother back to health, Constance takes her to a séance; perhaps she will find comfort from beyond the grave. But the meeting has tragic consequences. Constance is left alone, her only legacy a mysterious bequest that will blight her life. So begins this brilliant and gripping novel, a dark mystery set in late-Victorian England.
Regular Price:$23.07
  • Membership Details:
    • First book free with 30-day trial
    • $14.95/month thereafter for your choice of 1 new book each month
    • Cancel easily anytime
    • Exchange books you don't like
    • All selected books are yours to keep, even if you cancel
  • - or -

Your Likes make Audible better!

'Likes' are shared on Facebook and Audible.com. We use your 'likes' to improve Audible.com for all our listeners.

You can turn off Audible.com sharing from your Account Details page.

OK

Publisher's Summary

A haunting tale of apparitions, a cursed manor house, and two generations of women determined to discover the truth, by the author of The Ghost Writer.

Sell the Hall unseen; burn it to the ground and plow the earth with salt, if you will; but never live there…

Constance Langton grows up in a household marked by death, her father distant, her mother in perpetual mourning for Constance's sister, the child she lost. Desperate to coax her mother back to health, Constance takes her to a séance; perhaps she will find comfort from beyond the grave. But the meeting has tragic consequences. Constance is left alone, her only legacy a mysterious bequest that will blight her life.

So begins this brilliant and gripping novel, a dark mystery set in late-Victorian England. It is a world of apparitions, of disappearances and unnatural phenomena, of betrayal and blackmail and black-hearted villains - and of murder. Constance's bequest comes in two parts: a house and a mystery. Years before, a family disappeared at Wraxford Hall, a decaying mansion in the English countryside with a sinister reputation. Now the Hall belongs to Constance, and she must descend into the darkness at the heart of the Wraxford mystery to find the truth - even at the cost of her life.

©2009 John Harwood (P)2013 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.8 (52 )
5 star
 (11)
4 star
 (25)
3 star
 (13)
2 star
 (2)
1 star
 (1)
Overall
3.7 (52 )
5 star
 (11)
4 star
 (21)
3 star
 (16)
2 star
 (3)
1 star
 (1)
Story
4.1 (52 )
5 star
 (18)
4 star
 (24)
3 star
 (6)
2 star
 (3)
1 star
 (1)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Holly Downing-Vest 09-05-14 Member Since 2011

    Love Mysteries, History, Economics, Sociology, Poetry, Photography & Bauhaus Design.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    50
    1
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    6
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Narrator Yells"
    Would you try another book from John Harwood and/or the narrators?

    Yes - per the author John Hardwood. Maybe - per the narrator, pending they don't yell.


    What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

    Ok. Not predictable. But the narrator was a bit annoying.


    Would you be willing to try another one of the narrators’s performances?

    Maybe - pending they don't yell.


    If this book were a movie would you go see it?

    Maybe


    Any additional comments?

    The story is promising. However, the primary narrator(s) yells. She seems to be approaching the narration as if she were performing from a stage, and overprojects her voice. In short, a bit overacted with loud outburst of yelling.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    twoseagreeneyes 07-06-14 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    7
    7
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great Victorian Period Read"
    What made the experience of listening to The Séance the most enjoyable?

    I think that the multiple narration, broken into sections worked well and added to the books overall appeal.


    What other book might you compare The Séance to and why?

    None that I can think of.


    Which character – as performed by the narrators – was your favorite?

    I really liked the narration of the male characters, but felt the author has a wonderful grasp of the female characters.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    It did keep me wanting to listen to more once the story got going. It was a little slow to build, but got better as it went on.


    Any additional comments?

    For a girl, growing up in the Victorian era has its own difficulties, but for Constance Langton things are far more ghastly than properly worn bustles and guarded reputations. Her mother is in an everlasting state of mourning over the loss of her youngest daughter Alma and her father is as detached, cold and indifferent as a wet fish. Forlorn, Constance makes a desperate attempt to bring her mother peace by arranging a séance’ which leads to Constance finding herself all alone in the world.


    An unexpected inheritance befalls her in the form of an old, dilapidated and crumbling mansion with an ominous history. Constance becomes obsessed with disentangling the web of peculiar and eerie happenings the mansion has held for several generations and in doing so, finds her mind on the precipice of insanity and her life in mortal peril.
    The author, John Harwood, does an excellent job of portraying the female character in this Victorian setting, which makes it easy to identify with the characters and follow the storyline with eager interest. The twists and turns of the mysteries surrounding the mansion and Constance’s life bind into a clever, believable conclusion.

    I listened to the audio version of the book and I felt the narration was good although it did take me a bit to warm up to one of the narrators. There is one scene in particular where I felt the narration was too loud (even though shouting was taking place), but overall the multiple narrators introduced in separate parts worked quite well.

    The story does take its time to build, but is worth the wait. I would recommend this book for its grasp of the era, the intricate story that beseeches being pieced together along with it skillful narration.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Karen United States 03-09-14
    Karen United States 03-09-14 Member Since 2011

    BigZ's Mom

    HELPFUL VOTES
    93
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    228
    51
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    3
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great narration lifts up an average story"
    What made the experience of listening to The Séance the most enjoyable?

    All three narrators were very good. They easily moved between characters and had excellent pacing.


    Would you be willing to try another book from John Harwood? Why or why not?

    I'm not sure. The plot was complicated, but not difficult to predict.


    What about the narrators’s performance did you like?

    All three are consummate professionals.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    No.


    Any additional comments?

    Very predictable gothic romance.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Laura Metcalfe 12-13-14
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    29
    4
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Narrator killed it for me."
    What disappointed you about The Séance?

    I couldn't bear it when the narrator spoke when she was in trance pretending to be her sister. I really don't like it when adults try to fake kids voices. It's like Minnie Mouse on steroids.


    What didn’t you like about the narrators’s performance?

    My personal preference is just that they read the book. I'm not a fan of turning a book into a radio play.


    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    I don't know. I had to stop listening to it. And thats a shame because I enjoyed his other book and was really looking forward to this one.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-4 of 4 results

    There are no listener reviews for this title yet.

Report Inappropriate Content

If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.

Cancel

Thank You

Your report has been received. It will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.