Blog Tour · Book Review

A House of Ghosts by W. C. Ryan is a thrilling mystery of a different kind; riveting and perfect for a cold miserable winter’s night @WilliamRyan_ @ZaffreBooks @Tr4cyF3nt0n

A House of Ghosts is a great read, not so much the spooky tale you might be expecting, and I’m delighted to share my review as part of the blog tour today.

Here’s the blurb …

Zaffre (4 Oct. 2018)

Winter 1917. As the First World War enters its most brutal phase, back home in England, everyone is seeking answers to the darkness that has seeped into their lives.

At Blackwater Abbey, on an island off the Devon coast, Lord Highmount has arranged a spiritualist gathering to contact his two sons who were lost in the conflict. But as his guests begin to arrive, it gradually becomes clear that each has something they would rather keep hidden. Then, when a storm descends on the island, the guests will find themselves trapped. Soon one of their number will die.

For Blackwater Abbey is haunted in more ways than one . . .

An unrelentingly gripping mystery packed with twists and turns, A House of Ghosts is the perfect chilling read this winter.

My thoughts …

I thoroughly enjoyed this one. I wasn’t quite sure what to expect but it was a good read … more a spy thriller than a spooky ghost story and I was pleasantly surprised.

When Lord Highmount invites a select group of people to Blackwater Abbey for the weekend, they are promised a time to remember with a seance to help him ‘find’ his two sons who were missing in action during the war.

Although the premise promises a ghost story, and there are ghosts in it, they aren’t the focus of the plot. There’s lots more going on.

Kate Cartwright and Secret Agent Donovan are sent by the Intelligence Service to spy on certain members of the group and their relationship takes an unexpected turn.

I enjoyed their story … and the fact that Kate is a psychic who can see ghosts and hope that we see more of them in the future.

I love Ryan’s style of writing. Classic with a modern twist, he creates an atmospheric world where not everything is as it seems.

All in all, a cracking read which will be perfect for a cold winter’s night.

Thanks to the team at Zaffre for my stop on the tour and my advanced reader’s copy.

About the author …

William Ryan

William Ryan’s first novel in the Captain Korolev series, The Holy Thief, was shortlisted for a Crime Writer’s Association’s New Blood Dagger, a Barry Award, The Kerry Group Irish Fiction Award and The Theakstons Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year. The second in the series, The Bloody Meadow, was shortlisted for the Ireland AM Crime Novel of the Year and the third, The Twelfth Department, was also shortlisted for the Ireland AM Crime Novel of the Year as well as the CWA’s Historical Fiction Dagger and was a Guardian Crime Novel of the Year..

The Constant Soldier, William’s fourth novel was described as “subtle, suspenseful and superb” by The Daily Mail and shortlisted for the HWA’s Gold Crown and the CWA’s Steel Dagger.

William’s latest novel (as W.C. Ryan), A House of Ghosts, was published in October 2018.

William lectures on creative writing at City University and helps run the First Monday crime evenings. Visit for more information.

I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments below :-)

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