If you’re into gothic books that are similar to Jane Eyre, then add The Quiet Stillness of Empty Houses to your TBR.
When Theodora becomes a governess for a little girl in a quiet mansion, she realizes the house and its mysterious lord, Cassius, are full of secrets.
What I liked:
- The atmosphere
Russell’s words drip with atmosphere! Her writing is lyrical and paints such a vivid picture of the multiple decaying houses in this book. Speaking of which…
- Creepy mansions
The settings almost feel like characters themselves. Theodora’s house, where she lives with her grandmother, is an ancient being falling apart around them. And Broken Oak Manor, where she works, feels like a slumbering giant.
- Ghosts! (Enough said.)
There’s a lot going on behind the scenes that Theodora tries to uncover.
- Theme of grief
Even though Theodora’s father died when she was young, his death plays a pivotal role in Theodora’s character arc.
- A great plot twist
What I didn’t like as much:
While I generally enjoy slow-paced and character-driven novels, the middle of this book dragged in places.
- The romance
The romance was just okay for me, and I felt like it could have been developed more!
Pub date: May 15, 2023
Thanks to BookSirens, Quill & Crow Publishing House, and author L.V. Russell for sending me an ARC for review!