Friday, January 9, 2015

Miramont's Ghost

Miramont's Ghost  tags: historical fiction, mystery

image by onidenki

Book description from Amazon
Miramont Castle, built in 1897 and mysteriously abandoned three years later, is home to many secrets. Only one person knows the truth: Adrienne Beauvier, granddaughter of the Comte de Challembelles and cousin to the man who built the castle.
Clairvoyant from the time she could talk, Adrienne’s visions show her the secrets of those around her. When her visions begin to reveal dark mysteries of her own aristocratic French family, Adrienne is confronted by her formidable Aunt Marie, who is determined to keep the young woman silent at any cost. Marie wrenches Adrienne from her home in France and takes her to America, to Miramont Castle, where she keeps the girl isolated and imprisoned. Surrounded by eerie premonitions, Adrienne is locked in a life-or-death struggle to learn the truth and escape her torment.
Reminiscent of Daphne du Maurier’s Rebecca, this hauntingly atmospheric tale is inspired by historical research into the real-life Miramont Castle in Manitou Springs, Colorado.

It's a good thing that Amazon Prime members are given this month 2 free books on its Kindle First program. However, one of the 2 books I downloaded, Miramont's Ghost, is a complete disaster. After reading the whole thing, I refuse to give this "soap opera disguised as a thriller gothic mystery" even a one-star. The only interesting part is the Prologue. The rest is just horrid.

It's an insult to say it is reminiscent of Daphne du Maurier's Rebecca. Oh, please! The book is neither haunting nor atmospheric and nowhere near the brilliance of Rebecca. The writing style is sophomoric at best and the author seems obsessed with the word "swallow", appearing more than a dozen times throughout the book. Almost everyone does it. She also likes the phrases "hair on back of neck stood on end" and "watching through her lashes". The author is either lazy or still needs creative writing lessons.

In my honest opinion the sad crying image above best illustrates the novel which I re-titled Sad, Sadder, Saddest - The Short Life of Adrienne Beauvier

SPOILERS ahead. If you are interested in reading the novel, please stop reading here.

Adrienne sees adults diddling people other than their wives or husbands and tells her family about it. The author chose these stupid adult images for a 4 year old girl just to establish the fact that she is clairvoyant.

Her aunt Marie despises her for her gift which she thinks might reveal her and her son's dirty little secrets.

Adrienne at 16 has very brief happy moments when she meets and gets engaged to a good boy. The aunt puts a stop to it by manipulating the boy's transfer to Brazil.

Meanwhile, her stupid governess asks Adrienne to tell her all the details of stuff she sees, then promptly records them in her journal. The reason is not explained except perhaps to contrive a scenario for the aunt to steal the journal giving her reason to bring Adrienne to America where her son Julien built a castle, the Miramont.

It gets sadder in America. She is told she will have a new name, Henriette, and will be the personal servant of her aunt. She is not allowed to go out and is locked in the attic of the castle at night, practically a slave and a prisoner. *Hello, Cinderella* She learns that her fiance dies at sea while travelling from Brazil to America to rescue her.

It gets even sadder when she is raped by her cousin Julien. [I didn't like that the author seemed to relish writing the rape. Instead of just saying she is raped, it is described in detail. Yuck!]

Julien turns out to be a pedophile hiding behind the priesthood. His father was murdered by his mother when he was just a little boy.

Are you ready for the saddest? Adrienne becomes pregnant from the rape and decides to stab and successfully kills herself and her baby. Dead at 17 and becomes the "ghost" of Miramont Castle who only appears in the Prologue.

The end.

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