Author: Sarah Dalton
Series: Mary Hades, #2
Format: Kindle; bought
My rating: 4 / 5
Mary Hades is drawn back into the world of the macabre as she moves with her family into the mysterious old house, Ravenswood. The mere mention of Ravenswood induces terror among the locals, and when strange things begin to occur, Mary and Lacey decide to get to the bottom of the secret hidden in the historic house once and for all.
As a dark power gathers, Mary finds her life becomes interconnected with the disturbing events that transpired in 1847 to eleven year old Liza Blair. The more Mary is drawn into Liza’s story, the more she realises someone close to her is in grave danger from the sinister energy at Ravenswood.
Set in the backdrop of an unsettling forest, and with strange neighbour Emmaline Delacroix obsessed with death and séances, Possess will take you even deeper into the murky depths of Mary Hades’s unusual life.
-- As seen on Goodreads
I bought Possess quite a while ago, and I had intended to read it long before now. I loved the first book in the series, but as with so many of my reading plans I only got around to continuing the series this Halloween past. Better late than never, I guess??
Possess continues on shortly after the family returns home from their holidays in Yorkshire where the first book ended. Mary’s parents soon announce that they are moving to an old manor house on the outskirts of a village close to her father’s workplace to cut down on his commute time. It’s a very quick move, and Mary and her mother begin the process while her father is away on a business trip. Right from the outset Mary is drawn to their new house, Ravenswood, and into the past and the mysteries and hauntings that surround it.
I loved that this book has a more sinister atmosphere than the first book. It still has all the creepiness that you expect from a ghost story, but I loved that it took a completely fresh approach, rather than sticking very closely to the first book in the series. The atmosphere that was created was fabulous, and without giving too much away, I loved how the diary entries were incorporated into the story. The parallels between what happened in the past and what was happening in the present was awesome, and kept me glued to the pages throughout.
Mary Hades is the main character and narrator, and I like both her and her best friend, Lacey, equally. Mary and Lacey met when they were both patients in a mental institution, and while Mary walked out of the hospital alive and well, Lacey wasn’t quite so lucky. She decided against crossing over after her death and has remained as a ghost by Mary’s side ever since. I absolutely adore their friendship, and it’s fabulous to see just how much both characters have grown in the space of two books and a couple of novellas.
For those that like their spooky stories romance-free, there is no romance in this book. And I really liked this! The focus was purely on the hauntings and creepy occurrences that happened in spades throughout the story, and to be perfectly honest, it was lovely to read a book where the main character wasn’t floating along with heart eyes after the nearest pretty face!
I was under the impression that this was going to be a trilogy and everything would be wrapped up in the next book, and it was only a couple of weeks ago that I found out that there will be two more books after this one! And I’m so glad about this, as with the amount of things that have been revealed about certain characters toward the end of Possess, I can’t wait to continue on and find out how the series continues. Overall, I really enjoyed Possess, and if you love creepy and atmospheric ghostly haunting stories, then I highly recommend giving the Mary Hades series a chance.