Wednesday, September 14, 2011

The Poisoned House by Michael Ford

The Poisoned HouseDescription:
The year is 1856, and orphan Abigail Tamper lives below stairs in Greave Hall, a crumbling manor house in London. Lord Greave is plagued by madness, and with his son Samuel away fighting in the Crimea, the running of Greave Hall is left to Mrs Cotton, the tyrannical housekeeper. The only solace for the beleaguered staff is to frighten Mrs Cotton by pretending the house is haunted.

So when a real ghost makes an appearance - that of her beloved mother - no one is more surprised than Abi. But the spirit has a revelation that threatens to destroy Abi’s already fragile existence: she was murdered, and by someone under their very own roof. With Samuel returned to England badly wounded, it’s up to Abi to nurse him back to health, while trying to discover the identity of the killer in their midst. As the chilling truth dawns, Abi’s world is turned upside down.
This is a mystery book I really enjoyed. Abi is a strong character despite the horrors she has had to endure when her mother died and she had to be under the instruction of Mrs. Cotton, the horrible head of the housekeeping staff. Mrs. Cotton has decided that Abi will bear the brunt of her anger and abuse physically and emotionally. As Abi failed in her attempt at escape, she is almost immediately besieged by another horror, this time in the form of a angry spirit. This spirit has targeted Abi and she doesn't know why.

After Abi figures out who the ghost really is, she now has a murder mystery to solve. One that points to one person in particular, but of course, proving it is something different. Although we figure out who the culprit is and why before Abi, it does not deter us from following Abi to the same conclusion. It also makes sense as to why she didn't come as quickly to the same conclusion. We are not in the wake of her emotional state.

Ah, but I do not want to give anything away. After all, that is the fun with a mystery. So, I will say that I give this book 4 stars. You will enjoy Abi and the rest of the staff except for Mrs. Cotton. For her, I have a boot with the name of her butt on the bottom of it. ;) Oh she was a perfect villan and I really couldn't stand her (if you couldn't guess). So, if you are wanting a fun and interesting YA mystery, pick up this book. I think you will enjoy it.
I received this book from NetGalley and the publisher and no compensation for my review was given.


  1. It seems a very nice YA mystery indeed, thanks for the review! A bit dickensians but interesting!

  2. Sounds like a story with lots of surprising twists. Fantastic review Melissa :)

  3. I didn't know this book, but it sounds intriguing. Ghosts, 1856, I'm curious about it ! Thanks for your great review !

  4. Loving the sound of this one Melissa! I could use a good mystery with a little ghost action and a villain I really and truly hate mixed in:) Thanks for the recommendation!

  5. Ok can I just say this sounds right up my alley---down to the villain. Seriously, if you are going to be evil you should go all out!

  6. Sounds fun! Love it when I've got a good villain to hate - as long as they get what they deserve. Hope your book finds her butt soon!

  7. I want this one! Sounds like something that would be perfect for next month. Thanks for the review.

  8. I loved this book! I'm glad you liked it too, I hadn't seen the trailer thanks for posting it :D

  9. Sounds good, and yes I do like a good mystery too. Especially if it's all mixed up with more

  10. That cover serious scares me! Reminds me of the movie "IT"! *shudders* Thanks for the nightmares I'll be having tonight.

    And a ghost story?! Weren't we looking for one of those?! Thanks for the review on this one. I wouldn't have guess the book was YA or even a fun mystery from the cover.

  11. @Anachronist... It was a good YA.

    @Nic... Even those that weren't surprising held your interest. I liked that.

    @Melliane... Boo! Yes, I really liked it. If you get it, I hope you enjoy it as much!

    @Jenny...Well, there may be more than 1. Perhaps? ;)

    @Felicia... Mrs. Cotton was EVIL!

    @Alyssa... Oh you'll hate Mrs. Cotton! I hope so too!

    @Ryan... Oh yes, it would be perfect for Oct!

    @Samita... I remember your review. I'm so glad we both enjoyed it!

    @Blodeuedd... Yes, I do think you'd like this one!

    @Missie... BOO! *erie music* :D

  12. Oh, this sounds like it has all the elements I'm drawn to - gothic mystery, ghosts, spooky setting.

  13. I have been wondering what this book is about. Thanks for the review! The cover creeps me out.


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