Author: L. M. Merrington
Genre: Historical fiction/Gothic novel
Target audience: Adult
Date Read: 08/05/20 – 12/05/20
I’ve had a copy of Greythorne for quite some time and I’m finally getting to it now that I am actively aiming to read the Australian books I own.
Merrington draws on the Gothic tradition, as you can probably tell from the cover. The main character, Nell, is sent to Greythorne Manor, an isolated house on a difficult-to-reach island (rocky outcrop?), to become governess to 8-year-old Sophie, the daughter of a scientist.
The sense of isolation within a large, empty house is very well done, and I could imagine Nell wandering empty corridors with the wind billowing outside. And particularly when Professor Greythorne.
I was getting some distinct Frankenstein vibes from the Professor, and while I was somewhat on the right track with that, Merrington definitely puts her own spin on the gothic mad scientist trope. I am probably already giving things away so I don’t want to elaborate anymore on that one.
Following in the tradition of the gothic novels before it, the story moves quite slowly, with the increasing sense of uneasiness. There is some good foreshadowing of things that really become important later. While it took me a few days to get through this one due to time, I think this a good one to dedicate a cozy winter afternoon to.
This review forms part of my 2020 Australian Women Writers Challenge. Click here for more information.