August 8, 2012

Charlotte Markham and the House of Darkling by Michael Boccacino

Charlotte Markham and the House of Darkling by Michael Boccacino is an intriguing Gothic tale about family and the mystery of things that are there, but unseen by most of the world. This author writes like Edgar Allan Poe and Tim Burton rolled into one.

Book Description
When the nanny to the young Darrow boys is found mysteriously murdered on the outskirts of the village of Blackfield, Charlotte Markham, the recently hired governess, steps in to take over their care. During an outing in the forest, they find themselves crossing over into The Ending, "the place for the Things Above Death," where Lily Darrow, the late mother of the children, has been waiting. She invites them into the House of Darkling, a wondrous place filled with enchantment, mystery, and strange creatures that appear to be, but are not quite, human.

However, everything comes with a price, and as Charlotte begins to understand the unspeakable bargain Mrs. Darrow has made for a second chance at motherhood, she uncovers a connection to the sinister occurrences in Blackfield and enters into a deadly game with the master of Darkling—one whose outcome will determine the fate of not just the Darrows but the world itself.

Charlotte Markham and the House of Darkling is a Victorian Gothic tale about family ties, the realm beyond the living, and the price you pay to save those you love.” – Charlotte Markham and the House of Darkling

My Thoughts
Charlotte Markham and the House of Darkling was written by a fellow University of Central Florida alumni, so naturally I wanted to read what he wrote. Although I never met him while attending school there, and we didn’t graduate in the same departments, it is the first UCF graduate I’ve ever read a book by, so I personally find that to be a very cool thing.

That being said, this isn’t the normal style of a novel that I would gravitate towards reading for fun. Although I do enjoy gothic tales and stories involving the paranormal, I honestly would have just passed this one up. I am so glad I didn’t do that! This is an exceptionally well written book in a style that may not be the most popular, but it is a creepily good read. I would have enjoyed it being a bit more scary, but it was still good.

Overall, I think Boccacino did an excellent job with this novel. The characters were all intriguing and developed well enough for me to care about (which is crucial for me finished a novel). I definitely recommend it to people who like stories told in a “Gothic” style.

* Thank you to the publisher of Charlotte Markham and the House of Darkling, William Morrow, for providing me with a copy of this book for review. All opinions expressed are my own.


Steph said...

I love creepy stories!

Mandy said...

Seems interesting!