[BOOKS] ✭ The Shrouded Walls Author Susan Howatch – Motyourdrive.co.uk

The Shrouded Walls chapter 1 The Shrouded Walls, meaning The Shrouded Walls, genre The Shrouded Walls, book cover The Shrouded Walls, flies The Shrouded Walls, The Shrouded Walls 33097ad633ccb Please Come I Don T Think I Ve Ever Needed You , And You Re All I HaveMarianne S Letter Never Reached Her Brother It Was Stolen And DestroyedEver Since Marianne Had Married Axel Brandson, Strange Things Had Happened Theirs Was No Love Match Axel Needed To Be Married To Inherit His Father S FortuneBut It Was Not Until Marianne Arrived At The Isolated Family Estate In Sussex That She Realized The Inheritance Was Clouded By Murder And That The Murderer Was Still Nearby, Waiting To Strike Again

10 thoughts on “The Shrouded Walls

  1. says:

    My Summary Marianne and her brother Alex had no idea that their parents had not made any plans for them in the case of their deaths Now, orphaned and destitute, the twins have no choice but to fend for themselves Marianne s only choices being the illegitimate child of a high ranking politician are to become a governess or to get married, lest her brother be forced to join the army Enter Axel Brandson A wealthy foreigner, he requests that Marianne become his wife so that he may fulfill the terms of his father s will and inherit the land left to him She accepts, and all seems well until she reaches the secluded family home that happened to be the scene of a gruesome murder Axel s father s And the murderer may or may not be living under the same roof One thing is certain, though every member of the family benefitted in some way from Axel s father s death, and they ll also benefit from Marianne s My Thoughts I read this book almsot eight years ago and adored it It was like nothing I d ever read before, and it introduced me to the word of gothic lit I found it in a discarded box of books outside the library and decided to give it a shot A few days ago I rediscovered it as I cleaned up my bookshelves and decided to see if I would enjoy it the second time around Needless to say, twelve year old me was not wrong Susan Howatch s writing is timeless, pulling you in and not letting go.Marianne s predicament sounds like the opening of an Austen novel, but it soon becomes clear that she is caught up in a lot than a simple family drama The plot is complex and the writing is detailed, yet not too filled with adjectives and descriptions so as to bore the reader It was a fairly short novel, but it never felt rushed or hurried.Final Thoughts I recommend this novel to anyone who enjoys gothic lit and anyone who enjoys a good mystery This book is proof that newer is not always better when it comes to books

  2. says:

    Susan Howatch is one of my favourite modern authors She has a fairly terse style without too many adjectives, and yet builds up realistic and sympathetic characters.In this, one of her early gothic novels, she uses as she often does a first person narrative to get inside the mind of the main character, a 17 year old girl in the 18th century, who finds herself in worrying and mysterious circumstances It s something of a thriller, almost in Mary Stewart s genre although without fast chases or exotic settings It s also a kind of whodunnit, as the narrator gradually pieces together clues, talking to various people in the household and putting her thoughts and discoveries on paper as she writes to her brother Naturally the puzzle is eventually solved, and everything tidied up, but not without a few shocks of the gothic style.It s quite a good book towards the end it became gripping as I felt and drawn into the story On the other hand, it doesn t feel really authentically 18th century The research is fine I can t fault the daily routine or the way people dressed or travelled On the other hand, the conversation and general descriptions sound like those of 20th century people they don t have the older style inflexions or styles of speech that the better historical authors use so readily.Nevertheless, I enjoyed reading it as a bit of escapism It s not a long book under 200 pages and the gothic horror bits aren t unpleasantly gory.

  3. says:

    If you like old school, wild and crazy gothics, this definitely falls into that category The heroine, Marianne Fleury, discovers upon the death of her parents that she and her twin brother have been left penniless Her carefree father never saw the importance of drafting a will, so upon his death, everything went to his estranged wife, leaving the family he created with his mistress to be turned into the streets.However, all is not lost A sympathetic solicitor refers another urgent client of his to Marianne This gentleman, Axel Brandson, stands to inherit his father s vast fortune but only if he marries within a year of his father s death Since Axel has spent most of his life abroad in Vienna, finding an English bride has proven difficult He proposes marriage, and the desperate Marianne accepts.And so begins a creepy, weird gothic tale Some of the creepiness the good part of it comes from the mystery plot Soon after the marriage, Axel takes Marianne to his family estate out in the remote reaches of the countryside There, Marianne learns that Axel s father did not die by chance Instead, he was murdered in the house and one of Axel s half brothers disappeared that same day and was presumed dead as well Rumor has it that Axel himself may have some connection to the deaths.And the Brandson family doesn t exactly fall over themselves to welcome Marianne either She encounters a cold stepmother in law and some very strange brothers and sisters in law With rumors of witchcraft and hints of violence and family secrets running underneath almost every interaction, this crew pretty much defines dysfunctional family And the effect is creepy in the extreme.Unfortunately for this book, the romance is every bit as creepy as the mystery For starters, Marianne is 17 and Axel 34 And yes, much is made of him being twice her age This starts off as a marriage of convenience and the brief allusions to sex between the two make it clear that, at least in the early days, they re having awkward, cold, duty sex Somehow this makes their relationship seem even skeevier.And then to top things off, Axel treats Marianne like a child than an equal He takes a very authoritarian tone with her, and I found some of their interactions very offputting His air of I m only being harsh for your own good because I understand the world much better than you do did not endear him to me even if Marianne does eventually fall in love with him Bottom line This book does have a creepy and offputting mood, so it works fairly well as a mystery However, I can t overlook the fact that the romance is just as horrifying as the creepy family secrets.

  4. says:

    The ending turns out rather depressing for most people except for the heroine.

  5. says:

    I became a big fan of Susan Howatch after have read Penmarric and Cashelmara The Shrouded Wall is a thrilling story about Marianne and her marriage to Axel Branson who was obliged to find a wife after his father dead in order to receive his inheritance.

  6. says:

    It took almost half of the book to really get the eerie feeling of the gothic mystery genre all the twists turns in the storyline No major character development in this relatively short novel, but an enjoyable read in the genre.

  7. says:

    3.5 stars Quick, readable gothic mystery.

  8. says:

    Good historical gothic novel The heroine is dated too weepy for today s reader but the author does a lot right, including deftly raising the stakes at each turn There s a whodunit which I couldn t anticipate a solution to could have been one of six people A little too much reliance on hiding behind draperies to overhear easy enough to fix, too, so it d odd she didn t vary it a little But I was entertained And I ll no doubt forget everything about it by tomorrow evening.

  9. says:

    A solid 3 stars for this novel, which is reasonably well written in the gothic romance style It held my interest all the way through and apart from the occasional illogical plot strategy used to move the narrative forward, it was a satisfying and enjoyable read.I would recommend this to anyone who enjoys a beguiling gothic romance, without being too concerned about dissecting the story or examining the narrative style too closely.

  10. says:

    A suspenseful, who done it, set in 1700 s England A young orphaned girl marries a stranger for the convenience of both of them he needs a wife for his inheritance to be gicen to him, she needs a husband for financial support of both her brother and herself But when she gets to his family home things are not what they seem, a murderer is out to get the inheritance for themselves, but who of the various family members could it be And is her life in danger too An easy to read thriller.

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