The Fletchers’ beautiful new house is everything they dreamed it would be. Built between two churches in Heptonclough, a small village on the moors that time forgot, it ought to be paradise for this young family of five, but they barely have a chance to settle in before they find that they’re anything but welcome. Someone seems to be trying to drive them away—at first with silly pranks but then with threats that become increasingly dangerous, especially to the oldest child, ten-year-old Tom Fletcher, who begins to believe that someone is always watching him.
The adults in Tom’s life are trying to help, including his parents; the vicar next door, younger and more dashing than you’d expect a vicar to be; and a therapist, Evi Oliver, who believes him more than she wants to. But there are other clues that something isn’t quite right in Heptonclough, including the mysterious accidental deaths of three toddlers over the last ten years. It is not until Tom’s siblings, two-year-old Milly and five-year-old Joe, go missing in turn that the little village’s evil secret turns the Fletchers’ dreams into a nightmare.
With Sacrifice, Awakening, and now Blood Harvest, S. J. Bolton displays time and time again her remarkable talent as a beguiling storyteller, a master of thrills, and the mistress of her own brand of modern gothic tale.
4 September (nine weeks earlier)
THE FLETCHER FAMILY BUILT THEIR BIG, SHINY NEW HOUSE on the crest of the moor, in a town that time seemed to have left to mind its own business. They built on a modest-sized plot that the diocese, desperate for cash, needed to get rid of. They built so close to the two churches - one old, the other very old - that they could almost lean out from the bedroom windows and touch the shell of the ancient tower. And on three sides of their garden they had the quietest neighbours they could hope for, which was ten-year-old Tom Fletcher's
“If S. J. Bolton carries on like this, she will have worshippers in the millions.”
—The Times (London)
Praise for Awakening:
“Awakening is a delicious gothic thriller.”
—Maureen Corrigan, National Public Radio
“I was totally riveted by S. J. Bolton’s second thriller, Awakening. . . . Perfect reading for a long plane trip.” —Nancy Pearl
“Evil is slithering through Dorset, and plucky Clara won’t rest until she scotches it. . . . Bolton’s heroine, so troubled and so valiant, is irresistible.”
Praise for Sacrifice:
“This riveting debut novel . . . just might be the page-turner of the summer. . . . It’s been a long time since we’ve devoured a book this length at one sitting. . . . We were just grateful to find ourselves in the hands of as extraordinary a storyteller as S. J. Bolton.”
—The Denver Post
“Val McDermid meets Patricia Cornwell on the North Sea.”
—St. Petersburg Times
“Bolton combines rich history, precise forensic detail, and breathtaking use of landscape in what is a stunning blend of medical thriller and creepy gothic suspense tale.”
—Booklist (starred review, Top Ten Crime Novel Debut)