Thursday, May 16, 2013

The Orphan Choir by Sophie Hannah

Bestselling crime author Sophie Hannah has written a spooky chiller for Hammer.  The same people who brought us the cult horror movies are now working with Random House to revive interest in horror writing. As well as re-issuing classic tales such as The Witches by Peter Curtis and a number of books by Graham Masterton some, some well-known authors are getting in on the act with tales of witches, ghosts and vampires. 2012 saw the release of Helen Dunmore’s The Greatcoat and Jeanette Winterson’s The Daylight Gate and this year also see the release of titles from Melvin Burgess and Julie Myerson.
The Orphan Choir is the story of Louise a Cambridge Mum with a noisy neighbour who is keeping her awake. Her husband Stuart however seems able to sleep through the neighbour’s noisy parties and as Louise continues to finds sleep elusive and her health begins to suffer we get the first indication that all is not quite right. Louise is advised by her local council to keep a noise diary and her entries are included as part of the narrative. We learn that her son has been accepted at Saviour College School as a probationer in the choir and now lives away from home during term time. Louise feels that the choirmaster Doctor Freeman is keeping her son away from her. As Louise wanders the house and fills out her noise diary she hears a choir of children singing she can even recognise her son’s voice amongst them. She believes that her neighbour is waging a campaign of terror and harassment against her. Her husband does not seem to understand. She hears the choir singing more and more often and dreams of finding sanctuary elsewhere and so she plans her escape to a second home at Swallowfield. She believes that here she will find peace and escape from those that are against her, her thoughts are growing increasingly irrational. When she hears the orphan choir and begins to see them she knows that her neighbour is not tormenting her but that the choir are warning her, but what are the warning her about? Where is the danger? And will Louise discover before she loses her mind? The Orphan Choir is a tense and thrilling read employing the fast pace and great character building that we have come to expect from Sophie Hannah. Her fans will not be disappointed.

Out now published by Hammer follow the link below to see my original review on

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