My rating: 5 of 5 star
Under Glass and Stone had such an exciting blurb that I couldn’t stop myself from requesting an ARC and thankfully, the book delivers big time!
The boxed set of Under Glass and Stone has both the books; Book #1 Under Glass and Stone and Book #2 Doors of Gold and Rust, and I have to say this the boxed set cover image is superb and attractive.
I am reviewing both the books separately so here’s the review of Under Glass and Stone
Under Glass and Stone is a young adult Gothic mystery that is exceedingly well-plotted. Castle Heights is an area where most families can trace their roots to the time the town was completed and Byrne House is this looming spooky mansion that has a lot of painful history attached to it.
Milo Foster was on his way to meet his grandmother but the scream that pierces the air from Byrne House forces him to abandon his bike and rush into the house. It is an image that is going to haunt Evelyn in days to come as no one sees Milo again. Evelyn struggles to convince the police that Milo is still somewhere inside the huge gothic mansion with her own mother refusing to acknowledge her claims and believing it is her obsession with the house talking. Unexpected help comes in the form of Alex Evans with his own personal demons and connection to the old house.
The protagonists are 17 years old but thankfully the author has characterized them mostly with some sense and maturity which has been lacking in few YA books that I have read recently. The history of the house comes alive with the discovery of Ada Byrne’s letters to her sister Mary and this historical part was absolutely fascinating that I wished for more from Ada and her POV. The middle segment of the story veers a bit toward the teenage drama with a sampling of 3-way romance and jealousy but in all fairness, Byrne House with its labyrinthine tunnels and the mystery surrounding the hallucinations takes center stage soon, and the author hooks in the reader to offer a thumping ride. A.N Willis has worked wonders creating a creepy haunted feel with the description of Byrne House.
The romance between Alex and Evelyn was sweet and touching and the friendship between all of them filled with warmth, I loved how they join hands together to discover more about the intrigue that surrounds Byrne House. Alex was a fantastic character who had a streak of a daredevil to him but still had a sense of right and wrong. The fantasy element in the story adds to the anticipation of the thriller and the twisty plot had me reading this well into the night.
Highly recommended for fans of gothic mysteries with romance and suspense!
Mysterious 5 stars☔☔☔☔☔
Many thanks to Booksirens and the author for a chance to read and review this book. All opinions are expressed voluntarily.
Pls check the review of Book 2 Doors Of Gold and Rust here
For five generations, Evelyn’s family has lived in the same small brick house, shadowed by the mansion across the street. Her Nana filled her childhood with stories about Byrne House: tales of missing children, of lovers gone mad. The mansion loomed every night in her dreams. Even now, at seventeen, Evelyn watches the sprawling Victorian from her second-floor bedroom, unable to explain her obsession with a house she’s never been inside.
Then one of the boys in Evelyn’s junior class disappears. Evelyn is the last person to see him–just a pale face in Byrne House’s tower window.
The police don’t believe her. Even her friends think she just imagined the face in the window. Only Alex–a mysterious newcomer with his own ties to Byrne House–shares her suspicions. But Evelyn has no idea how far she and Alex will have to go to find the answers. Or what she’ll have to remember.
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