*NEW RELEASE SPECIAL* Review of The House on Widow’s Hill – Book 9 of the Ishmael Jones mysteries by Simon R. Green #BrainfluffNetgalleybookreview #TheHouseonWidowsHillbookreview


Anyone who has followed my blog will know that this series is a solid favourite – see my reviews of The Dark Side of the Road, Till Sudden Death Do Us Part, Murder in the Dark, Into the Thinnest of Air, Death Shall Come, Very Important Corpses and Night Train to Murder. So I was delighted to see this latest addition to this paranormal murder mystery series.

BLURB: “That house is a bad place. Bad things happen there . . .”
Set high on top of Widows Hill, Harrow House has remained empty for years. Now, on behalf of an anonymous prospective buyer, Ishmael and Penny are spending a night there in order to investigate the rumours of strange lights, mysterious voices, unexplained disappearances, and establish whether the house is really haunted. What really happened at Harrow House all those years ago? Joined by a celebrity psychic, a professional ghost-hunter, a local historian and a newspaper reporter, it becomes clear that each member of ‘Team Ghost’ has their own pet theory as to the cause of the alleged haunting.

REVIEW: As ever, we have our usual fix of creepy shenanigans going on, as Ishmael and Penny find themselves spending the night in a haunted house. This book follows directly on from Night Train to Murder, so if you haven’t read that one, do be aware – especially at the beginning – there will be some references to events outside the story. I was interested to see this one build more slowly than usual, but given that Green does it well and I know and trust his pacing, I appreciated the general ratcheting up of the tension. It doesn’t hurt that there are the usual dollops of humour that help lighten the tension in the dark, brooding house.

Though the death and denouement rather knocked me for six. I’m still pondering as to whether Green has managed to pull this one off, as it stretched the bounds of my credulity rather. However, I think on balance, I’ll give him a pass. I certainly was never in any danger of putting the book down before getting to the end. All in all, this is an entertaining, page-turning addition to this quirky series.

Recommended for fans of paranormal murder mysteries that doesn’t take itself too seriously. While I obtained an arc of The House of Widow’s Hill from Netgalley, the opinions I have expressed are unbiased and my own.

13 responses »

  1. I can’t believe I’ve never read anything by Green, although I may have a book of his buried on a shelf somewhere. I love that there is some humor in the story😁

    • Yes – this is one of my go-to series, because it’s fun and quirky and unlike anything else I generally read. It would be lovely to find someone else to compare notes – but I do understand about everyone’s teetering TBRs!

  2. I’m not sure I’ve ever read a paranormal murder mystery (beyond urban fantasy of course!) But this series does sound intriguing. I love that cover too! Very dark, brooding and atmospheric!

    • It is an ongoing theme within this series – the first book also has that vibe, so you could happily start at the beginning to see if the humour and setup is one you’d enjoy, Maddalena.

  3. Ah, a haunted house mystery can be so much fun! You’re quite right, though, that a writer can’t Scooby-Doo their way through the mystery–there can’t be flying ghosts through canyons explained away by a complex network of ziplines that NO WAY WERE THEY THERE BEFORE. No. No no no. Fine, that works in a Scooby-Doo episode, but NOT in a mystery novel!

    • Lol… it wasn’t a Scooby-Doo type denouement – it just took rather a left-turn that slightly boggled me. But I’m a solid fan of these books, anyway. The humour is a major plus…

      • On a random side-note, Blondie FINALLY got to see that new Scoob movie–our pre-order DVD arrived this weekend. The result? Weeeell she liked it, which is the important thing. Biff refused to watch it, and Bash only hung around for the Blue Falcon parts. Some of the jokes already feel dated, but some other elements–like the villain–were actually quite a lot of fun. (Hint without spoilers: they expand faaaaar into the Hanna Barbara-verse…)

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