Author: B Lloyd
Publisher: Captive Press
Publication Date: August 2012
Paperback: 223 Pages
When Aubrey Marchant’s engagement to Eleanor Maydew was announced to his friends, he received mixed blessings.
‘The Maydews are a bohemian lot – not many servants, even before the War.’
‘Keen on brown bread and vegetables – don’t expect too much in the way of creature comforts.’
‘Brave chap, I am sure you’ll find the country air bracing.’
‘And Eleanor comes of good stock, too. Never mind the burst water pipes.’
Aubrey managed to shrug off most of these under a jocular guise. One of his closest friends however, let slip something that would come back to him later.
‘I wouldn’t mind the rest of it – only I believe it may be a House of Spirits. Hope you can sleep all right at nights.’
Aubrey laughed at the time. ”
A crowded house party – with more guests on the way. Despite instructions to the contrary, the older part of the house is opened up . . .and something is inadvertently let out, to wreak mild havoc and insanity on the Maydews and their guests. That nasty incident involving Eleanor, followed by unpleasantness over Penny’s dress, and what is it Aubrey can hear, on the outer edge of his dreams?
Hysteria, missed cocktails, and something nasty in the attic.
Snrrip, snrrip. Snip, snap.
Even the rats run away.
A ghost tale, almost not quite long enough to qualify as a novelette, created in celebration of M.R.James’s 150th anniversary.
Ungentle sleep is story of revenge of Arabella Hillburn who goes missing in 1569. She is going to be Queen’s seamstress and is taken to Queen’s house by her brothers.
The story alternates between 1569 and 1930. Lydia Maydew is currently taking care of the house in absence of her parents. She and her brother and some friends are going to be on their own in house for sometime. And they start hearing voices since they unlocked the attic.
Snrrip, snrrip. Snip, snap.
Ungentle Sleep is a well written novella and a good read. The 1569 story writing reminds you of Shakespearean Era. The alternating of times is very well handled too. But the book has it own flaws. The end seemed to abrupt. And I felt it just ended too very soon. Its a novella, I know. So guess this point could be negligible. I also found characters and plot to be a little too weak.But the story telling really made up for all these flaws. I also missed furious ghost heroine.Arabella Hillburn is scary but gentle.
Its a quick, short read and will leave you with some jitters and goosebumps. And a promising writer to watch for.
I did a short interview with B Lloyd on twitter and it was fun.
Me: Any haunted house that gave you idea to write Ungentle Sleep ?
Lloyd:..we stayed briefly in Dylan Thomas’s town,Laugharne, when I was a child,which is full of ghosts & tales, so probably that gave me ideas!
Me: What happens if Arrabella Hillburn was accidentally transported to Tower of London and she meets headless ghost of Anne Boleyn ?
Lloyd: Nice one! I think they wd probably argue over who could wear a ruff! 🙂 & Bella might well drive Anne mad with her constant sewing…
Lloyd:…. maybe the one who was the Human Tardis in the Dr Who for Arabella, and perhaps any of the females from Poirot series for Lydia
Me: Are there any local tales in town due to
@BellaHillburn haunting the house like the one in Women in Black which says seeing the Woman in Black meant that the death of a child would follow.
Lloyd: hmmmm…. well, along the lines of cut dresses, hysterical attacks, possession…. although on the whole, she is trying to break through…
… as she is trying to find an escape, some eternal rest.
Bella is not as vengeful as the Woman in Black