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Publisher's Summary

Internationally best-selling author Julie Myerson's beautifully written yet deeply chilling novel of psychological suspense explores the tragedies - past and present - haunting a picturesque country cottage.

Mary Coles and her husband, Graham, have just moved to a cottage on the edge of a small village. The house hasn't been lived in for years, but they are drawn to its original features and surprisingly large garden, which stretches down into a beautiful apple orchard. It's idyllic, remote, picturesque: exactly what they need to put the horror of the past behind them.

One hundred and fifty years earlier, a huge oak tree was felled in front of the cottage during a raging storm. Beneath it lies a young man with a shock of red hair, presumed dead - surely no one could survive such an accident. But the red-haired man is alive and, after a brief convalescence, is taken in by the family living in the cottage and put to work in the fields. The children all love him, but the eldest daughter, Eliza, has her reservations. There's something about the red-haired man that sits ill with her. A presence. An evil.

Back in the present, weeks after moving to the cottage and still drowning beneath the weight of insurmountable grief, Mary Coles starts to sense there's something in the house. Children's whispers, footsteps from above, half-caught glimpses of figures in the garden. A young man with a shock of red hair wandering through the orchard.

Has Mary's grief turned to madness? Or have the events that took place so long ago finally come back to haunt her?

©2016 Julie Myerson (P)2016 HarperCollins Publishers

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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Story

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Not What I expected.

The story was OK, kind of slow and windy. Narrators were fine except the men's voice all sound the same. Thought it would be more haunting then it was and less sex. Hard to hear a teen having sex, but that's just me. Moving on to a faster more exciting listen.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Performance
  • Story

Kept me interested but wished for more paranormal.

It didn't make total sense to go Back and forth in time- until the end, when s the reason for Mary's abilities to see ghosts was
hinted at. Unfortunately this wasn't explored enough. It made me knock off a star for the story. Why didn't the author have Mary explore her childhood when she had psychic abilities? It would have made the story complete.

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Many wonderful aspects to this book

Loved the reader of this book. Thought story great...beautifully written and atmospheric until the last 3 chapters. At that point, the story went from a 5 star story to a 3 star story. It was so good up to that point I just thought the poor writer must have exhausted herself. I look forward to her next book.

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  • Christine
  • Oakland, Mi, United States
  • 06-07-16

If you can put up with a terrible ending........

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

Not sure I would ever recommend. If a friend asked me what I thought about them reading it, I would have plenty to say. :) Definitely an interesting premise and the book keeps you interested pretty much all the way through. Perhaps that is why the ending is so frustrating.

Would you recommend The Stopped Heart to your friends? Why or why not?

See above. Also, some of the subject matter is not for the faint of heart or squeamish. I really felt like giving up on it because of that, but I so badly wanted to see what happened. So it was equally frustrating to put myself thru it all and end up with basically NOTHING. (I did fast forward several times, always an option...

Which character – as performed by Elizabeth Knowelden and Lucinda Clare – was your favorite?

Can't say that any of them captured my admiration. And they sure said "what" a lot ( all of them!)

Did The Stopped Heart inspire you to do anything?

Other than try to figure out why the author would so badly leave everyone hanging, no.

Any additional comments?

Narration was good for the most part.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Mary Thought About That...

I really did like this book although I am not one that generally likes ghost stories. The narration was fantastic and the two different story lines were heart breaking. I have two issues that bothered me about this book: I wish the author would have spent more time on a story line at a given time. At times it felt as though the two plots were going back and forth so quickly if I blinked I could lose track of what was going on. The second is the line: "Mary thought about that" which was repeated more times than I could count... It started getting to the point would I could predict when it was coming. Otherwise-- good book.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful