Eventide (Hode’s Hill #3),
by Mae Clair
Publication: Lyrical Underground; December 31, 2019
About the book: The darkness is coming . . .
The old house near Hode’s Hill, Pennsylvania is a place for Madison Hewitt to start over—to put the trauma of her husband’s murder, and her subsequent breakdown, behind her. She isn’t bothered by a burial plot on the property or the mysterious, sealed cistern in the basement. Not at first. Even the presence of cold spots and strange odors could be fabrications of her still troubled mind. But how to explain her slashed tires or the ominous messages that grow ever more threatening?
Convinced the answer lies in the past, Madison delves into the history of the home’s original owners, only to discover the origin of a powerful evil. An entity that may be connected to a series of gruesome attacks that have left police baffled. No matter where she turns—past or present—terror lingers just a step away, spurred on by a twisted obsession that can only be satisfied through death…
As I sit down to write this review I have all kinds of emotions going on. First of all, I absolutely loved this third installment in the Hode’s Hill series. Secondly, I’m sad because I believe that this is the last of this wonderfully creepy series. Thirdly, I spooked myself beyond belief after finishing it (in broad daylight, no less) and am still laughing at myself for being such a baby! I will get to my silly story (Mae – you will love it), but first, my review.
Eventide takes us to Hode’s Hill once again for another chilling mystery involving all kinds of spooky, paranormal occurrences. Madison Hewitt has bought the old house at the end of the road (a.k.a. Stewart Manor) and is looking forward to starting over on her own, spending time with her sister, and enjoying her career in real estate. Spooky things begin to happen immediately upon her moving in, but then she also learns a few days later about longtime rumors of the place being haunted. But the little quirks and curiosities seem to intensify after her boyfriend, Roth, unseals an old cistern in the basement.
This novel is told from multiple POV’s and from dual timelines – present day and the 1870’s. The narrator from the 1870s is a young woman named Hollande Moore who is moving to Stewart Manor to work as a companion to Sylvia Stewart, the aging mother of adult sons/twins Nathaniel and Tristan. Hollande quickly learns how argumentative and unpleasant the woman is, as well as, she gets the feeling that there are many secrets within the family. Meanwhile, the present-day story involves Madison trying to figure out what or who is causing problems in her home, seeking help from her empath sister Jillian and her boyfriend Dante, an artist that has the ability to communicate with those beyond the grave.
There are times when I read novels with dual timelines that it gets frustrating and there are times that it is absolute perfection. Eventide is a novel where the execution of the plot is perfect. The creepiness factor is already through the roof with Mae Clair’s trademark creativity and vivid imagery. Even little things like a glove being moved are scary when written by Mae. But alternating between the creepy things happening in the past and present provides the reader with a wonderfully unsettling feeling that keeps the pages turning with wild anticipation about what will happen next. Be warned there are frequent descriptions that are quite graphic, but this all just adds to the wonder and mystery of the story.
I have mentioned before that I never had any interest in reading this genre until Mae Clair came into my life. Eventide is another example of a book that, a few years ago, I never would have picked up. However, it is one of my favorite books from her to date and certainly in my top 10 reads this year. I have liked all of her books (loved, really) but Eventide just completely gripped me from beginning to end. With Mae’s exquisite writing, character development, and endless surprises – Eventide was far beyond a five-star read for me. This one is highly recommended, but definitely read it in the daytime, with lights on, someone sitting nearby, and so forth – it is scary!
*Thanks to NetGalley, Lyrical Underground, and Mae Clair for providing this ARC in exchange for my honest opinion!
Pre-Order Eventide on Amazon!
And now for my embarrassing story of the day…
Yes, I say the embarrassing story of the day because it seems I typically have at least one good one per day, it’s just how I am. I started reading this book yesterday evening around 7ish. Normally, when I start a book, I read until I finish it without stopping. However, my husband distracted me with a movie so I had to continue reading today. It is crazy windy here today so there was a variety of creepy background noises to increase my spook-level while reading. Then, of course, the dogs are being weird and whining because of the wind and spooky sounds. But the cherry on top of it all was when I reached the end of the book. Once Eventide ends, on the next page is a sort of afterward about A Thousand Yesteryears, which was the first in Mae’s Point Pleasant series and the Mothman. There’s the book cover, blurb, and an excerpt with the first few chapters. Mind you, I have read A Thousand Yesteryears twice already, but I read through the blurb and excerpt anyway. My husband had left the t.v. on earlier before he left, so when I finished reading and closed my iPad, I look up to see pictures of the collapsed Silver Bridge and realized it was a documentary about Point Pleasant, the Silver Bridge, and of course – Mothman. That’s not amazingly unusual, but this is the second or third time in 2 years that I have finished reading one of Mae’s books, only to look up and realize that a Mothman special was on t.v. Weird? Possibly. But what spooked me was while I was staring at the t.v. thinking about this repeated coincidence – the t.v. turns off. I will admit that I sort of sat there like an idiot for a minute thinking, “what the hell” while also being scared to death. But then I heard one of my dogs let out a big sigh and I looked over and saw that she had just rested her big head on top of the remote, thus turning off the t.v. Still a bit creepy that she just so happened to directly hit the power button without messing up the volume, channels, etc. However, I finally got myself together and was able to laugh about it all 🙂 I’m now certain that there is no ghoul in my basement or anything after me.