Today, Ellen is taking part in the blog tour for Mirrorland by Carole Johnstone, and I’ll be sharing her review with youu all just a little further down.
Carole Johnstone is an award-winning writer from Scotland, whose short stories have been published all over the world. Mirrorland, a psychological suspense with a gothic twist, is her debut novel.
Having grown up in Lanarkshire, she now lives in the beautiful Argyll & Bute, and is currently working on her second novel: a very unusual murder-mystery, set in the equally beautiful Outer Hebrides.
The most dangerous stories are the ones we tell ourselves…
No. 36 Westeryk Road: an imposing flat-stone house on the outskirts of Edinburgh. A place of curving shadows and crumbling grandeur. But it’s what lies under the house that is extraordinary – Mirrorland. A vivid make-believe world that twin sisters Cat and El created as children. A place of escape, but from what?
Now in her thirties, Cat has turned her back on her past. But when she receives news that one sunny morning, El left harbour in her sailboat and never came back, she is forced to return to Westeryk Road; to re-enter a forgotten world of lies, betrayal and danger.
Because El had a plan. She’s left behind a treasure hunt that will unearth long-buried secrets. And to discover the truth, Cat must first confront the reality of her childhood – a childhood that wasn’t nearly as idyllic as she remembers…
Click the link below to order your copy now:
As soon as I heard about this book I was desperate to read it and an endorsement from Stephen King – consider me totally on board!
Ellice and Catriona are twins but not just any old type, they are mirror twins which are very rare and very special according to their mum. We meet the twins as they wait at the docks for a pirate ship to come and rescue them and so begins a detailed journey into their highly imaginative childhoods and the consequences as they become adults.
I’ll admit to struggling with this book initially as it does concentrate on the twins imagined play world called Mirrorland. A place so intricately imaginative it is hard to work out what is real and what isn’t, something that Cat struggles with when after 12 years in California she is faced with returning home to Scotland after Ellice (El) goes missing. Mirrorland is inhabited by the terrifying Blackbeard, an evil witch and a creepy tooth fairy amongst others. A lot of the time it does not seem like a fun place to be at all! There is a good reason for the reader to have a glimpse of the girls history as things begin to make more sense the more you explore.
Although evidence suggests otherwise Cat is convinced that El is alive, she thinks she wouldfeel if anything had happened to her. Even after having a massive fallout years ago she refuses to accept her sister may be dead. She then begins to receive clues around their family home…what will the treasure be at the end and who has set them?
I loved how dark this novel was and I was absolutely gripped once I’d got a handle on the “fantasy” element of it. I was left agog so many times and did not see which way the story was going to go at all.
A fantastic debut and I look forward to what’s next from this author!