Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Stormcrow Castle

My new Gothic romance, Stormcrow Castle, is out today!

On visiting Stormcrow Castle, Helena Carlisle is disturbed to find that her aunt, the housekeeper, has disappeared. Helena takes on the role of the new housekeeper and it is not long before strange incidents begin to unnerve her. The castle's owner, Simon, Lord Torkrow, frequents the graveyard at night; the portrait gallery conceals a secret room; identities are hidden at a masked ball; and the key to the attic is missing. As the secrets unravel, Helena finds herself drawn into a world where nothing is as it seems and she must fight for her chance of love...and to survive.

"How I do love Gothic novels, and here is a good example of the genre. Take a brooding castle on the moors, a sinister master, ghostly phenomena, a Mrs Danvers like lady's maid and a masked ball and stir them all together, then serve and enjoy." My Shelf

I thought you might like a taster!


Helena Carlisle rested her valise on the dry stone wall and peered into the gathering gloom. The March daylight was fading and she was beginning to feel uneasy. The carrier had told her it was only two miles to Stormcrow Castle but she had already walked three miles across the moor.

She strained her eyes but there was no sign of the castle, nor was there any sign of a house at which she could ask for directions. Looking over her shoulder, she wondered if she should retrace her steps, but it was a long way back to the nearest town and she decided to continue on her way. She picked up her valise and walked along the rutted road, bending her head against the icy wind and praying it would not snow.

A sound disturbed the silence and, looking back, she saw a speck in the distance. As it drew closer she could see that it was a coach, racing towards her. Four black horses were pulling it, and it was swaying from side to side. She stepped aside to let it pass, but as it drew level with her, the horses were reined in and the coach rolled to an abrupt halt.

The door was flung open and a man's voice said: 'Get in.'
She was about to back away when she caught sight of the gentleman inside. She heard her aunt's voice in her memory: "Like a portrait, he is, with his gaunt face and his long, pointed chin. He should have been living in 1617, not 1817. Lord Torkrow his name is, but no one calls him that hereabouts. They all call him Stormcrow."
'Don't dawdle, you're late as it is,' he snapped.
Late? she thought uneasily. But I didn't tell anyone I was coming.

You can find the rest of the first chapter on my website by clicking here
I hope you enjoy it!

Amanda Grange


Melinda said...

Congratulations on another great gothic, Amanda. It's a really intriguing start - I look forward to reading the whole book!

Well done and good luck with it

Anonymous said...

Ooh, sounds great, I hope to pick it up sometime really soon!! :)