Footsteps In The Dark

Published October 23, 2011 by myliteraryleanings

Review of Footsteps In The Dark by Georgette Heyer

Overview from www.bn.com: The ramshackle old house, with its rambling charm is beloved of Peter, Margaret and Celia, who have inherited it from their uncle. But local wisdom says The Priory is haunted. Then a murder is committed. Does the key to the crime lie in the realm of the supernatural? Or is the explanation much more down to earth?

My Review:

I had never heard of this author prior to downloading this book for a Free Friday.  Somewhere in the description it said that she was similar in style to Agatha Christie and that made me curious so I downloaded it.  I was not disappointed.

The story centers around the three people mentioned above in the overview plus Celia’s husband who had come with them to set up house and who definitely doesn’t believe in ghosts.  At first neither do the siblings but local legends and weird noises start to make Celia and Margaret have their doubts.  Their  brother warns Margaret, aka Peg- which is often a nickname for Margaret but don’t ask me how I figured that out because even I don’t know where I remember hearing that before- “Don’t be an ass, Peg,” when she voices her doubts.  This is hilarious to me because I think that the way they use that expression seems to be somehow different from the way we use it today.  He further admonishes them that the doors are probably just noisy because they need oil.

As the story progresses they start to experience bizarre events.  First, they find a skeleton locked up in some old part of the building that they only venture to because someone, and I have forgotten who it was exactly, hears a strange noise.

From a weird Frenchman who lives in the village they learn that the ghost has a name.  He is refered to as the monk, which makes sense if you remember that the Priory was once a home for monks.  Perhaps this monk meet some unnatural fate there and is still seeking his revenge.

But the Frenchman is not the only weird character in this story.  There is a guy who’s hobby brings him on their property frequently.  And what is his hobby?  Collecting moths of course, just like any normal English bachelor does.  His name is Ernest Titmarsh and although he is at first thought to be harmless, the siblings later begin to wonder.  And then the strangest of all is perhaps Michael Strange who is also seen wandering around the Priory frequently and I might add without permission as well as having strange conversations with a vacuum cleaner salesman.  The vacuum cleaner salesman is also of course suspicious; he is selling a vacuum cleaner that apparently somehow works without electricity though it is never explained how exactly.

The story starts to get serious however after the Monk is seen by their aunt and when the Frenchman is murdered.  The murder is just barely discovered however because the person who murdered him, presumably the monk, tries to stage it as a suicide and nearly succeeds.  In addition Peter and Margaret soon come face to face with the monk and in the process find out more about him and Micheal Strange who Margaret has inexplicably fallen in love with, despite knowing next to nothing about him.

But if you want to know who did it and find out what really happened, well, you’ll just have to read the book and I highly recommend you do.  It is available for a decent price as an e-book on www.bn.com right now.  Enjoy.

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2 comments on “Footsteps In The Dark

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