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House of Small Shadows

House of Small Shadows [Kindle Edition]

Adam Nevill
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (47 customer reviews)

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Product Description

Product Description

Catherine’s last job ended badly. Corporate bullying at a top television production company saw her fired and forced to leave London, but she was determined to get her life back. A new job and now things look much brighter. Especially when a challenging new project presents itself – to catalogue the late M H Mason’s wildly eccentric cache of antique dolls and puppets. Rarest of all, she’ll get to examine his elaborate displays of posed, costumed and preserved animals, depicting scenes from World War I. When Mason’s elderly niece invites her to stay at the Red House itself, where she maintains the collection, Catherine can’t believe her luck. Until his niece exposes her to the dark message behind her uncle’s ‘Art’. Catherine tries to concentrate on the job, but M H Mason’s damaged visions raise dark shadows from her own past. Shadows she’d hoped had finally been erased. Soon the barriers between reality, sanity and memory start to merge. And some truths seem too terrible to be real.

Also available from Adam Nevill: An Adam Nevill Horror Omnibus: Apartment 16, The Ritual and Last Days.

Book Description

The Red House: home to the damaged genius of the late M. H. Mason, master taxidermist and puppeteer, where he lived and created some of his most disturbing works. The building and its treasure trove of antiques is long forgotten, but the time has come for his creations to rise from the darkness. Catherine Howard can’t believe her luck when she’s invited to value the contents of the house. When she first sees the elaborate displays of posed, costumed and preserved animals and macabre puppets, she’s both thrilled and terrified. It’s an opportunity to die for. But the Red House has secrets, secrets as dreadful and dark as those from Catherine’s own past. At night the building comes alive with noises and movements: footsteps, and the fleeting glimpses of small shadows on the stairs. And soon the barriers between reality, sanity and nightmare begin to collapse . . .

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1057 KB
  • Print Length: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Pan (10 Oct 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (47 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #91,478 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Adam Nevill (aka Adam L G Nevill) was born in Birmingham, England, in 1969 and grew up in England and New Zealand. He is the author of the supernatural horror novels, BANQUET FOR THE DAMNED, APARTMENT 16, THE RITUAL, LAST DAYS, and HOUSE OF SMALL SHADOWS. Two of his novels have been awarded The August Derleth Award for Best Horror Novel: THE RITUAL in 2012 and LAST DAYS in 2013. He lives in Birmingham and can be contacted through

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An odd book 29 Dec 2013
To be honest this is a really difficult book to review. There are both some truly wonderful and totally awful parts to it. Lets start with the good:the images that Nevill creates are fantastically disturbing and dark. The best parts are the descriptions of the contents of the twisted house which really leap out of the page and stay with you long after the boook is closed. Nevill is very successful at taking the old cliche of a haunted house and doing some new and intriguing things with it. I have read a lot of horror and I must admit I am fairly jaded but this book actually managed to scare me (Nevill's other books succeed in this as well). However the plot is a little meh. The actual story doesn't go anywhere,the main chracter is merely a victim who doesn't seem to possess her own agency and she makes some rather nonsensical decisons which lets down the story. In general I'd say that Nevill isn't very good at female characters which is a pity because his male characters are actually very good.

Read this book for the amazing (and terrible) images but don't hope for the plot to go anywhere. But even with its flaws it is still vastly superior to 90% of so-called "horror" published these days. Overall I think the concept of "the journey is better than the destination" applies quite well here.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A let down 16 Nov 2013
By Mr B
Format:Kindle Edition
I bought this book having read all of the authors previous novels. They were excellent, especially 'The Ritual', which is one of the best horror novels i have ever read. I bought the latest with great expectations but was disappointed. I just found the whole thing disjointed and confusing with gaping holes in the narrative, i was so disappointed. Maybe its just that i was expecting much more, but if you are a first time reader of this author i suggest you start with 'The Ritual'.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Disturbingly creepy 13 Jan 2014
By TonyD
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Opinion among other reviewers of this book appears to be pretty divided, but I would certainly number myself among those who thoroughly enjoyed it. A lot of modern horror novels seem to be rather formulaic, but I found this story to be a welcome departure. Having been a devotee of horror/supernatural literature for well over 50 years, perhaps my tastes have become a little jaded, but I found this novel genuinely different and disturbingly creepy. I had read "The Ritual" by the same author previously and will certainly be looking for more from his pen.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I'm a real fan of Adam Nevill having read all of his novels and even gone to great lengths to search out his short stories. I'm used to his style of writing. Ready for the bizarre and wacky. Waiting for him to wander away from his original thread only to return pages later with something truly dark and scary. House of Small Shadows starts off as typical Nevill, completely off-the-wall, but once he hit his stride I was hooked, at least for the first half.

In this novel Nevill has gone back to traditional, typical, horror and added his own unique, nightmare, twists. An old house in the middle of nowhere shelters weird, demonic characters and offers to reveal a particularly evil history. Dolls, puppets and stuffed animals abound around the house and are used to great effect to create a sense of unease with their ever watchful glass eyes and the subtle suggestions that maybe that one moved?. Nice twist in the name of the house, 'The Red House', which throws up suggestions of madness, war, blood and murder and it's obvious that once a mentally frail woman, damaged by inexplicable events in her past, is called to the house it's not going to end well for anyone.

There are some nicely written macabre details set around the character of The Red House which seems to shift and alter with a life of it's own, while the old town at the end of the lane has it's own fair share of secrets and shadows. Most of the 'nasty' comes in the form of taxidermy, bizarre ritual and a real sense of building insanity. The puppet angle is well constructed and packed with themes almost too horrible to contemplate.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars House of Small Shadows 8 Feb 2014
By Keen Reader TOP 100 REVIEWER
I’ve read a couple of books by this author, and they are great spooky horror reads. The Ritual in particular was both horrifying and enthralling so I held out great hopes for this book.


Catherine Howard works for Osberne, a firm of valuers and auctioneers, and is asked to value the contents of the Red House, which had been the home of M H Mason, master taxidermist and puppeteer until he committed suicide many years previous. Since then, his niece, now 93 years of age has been the curator of his works, most of which have never been seen by the outside world. (See – spooky already!) Only the elderly Edith and one servant live in the house; the rest of the rooms seem to be filled with specimens of Mason’s work – horrifying, vivid recreations of desperate moments of war and death and destruction; skilfully captured animals frozen in a moment in time; dark visions, chemical aromas, skitterings around the corners of each corridoor, hushed noises outside the closed door of Catherine’s bedroom. Catherine has always lived on the edge of her nerves; will this experience drive her over the edge?

My goodness, this novel spooked me. Almost all the narrative is that of Catherine, as she finds herself in a nightmare she can’t seem to get out of. So the reader is drawn into that nightmare as she descends into it, and we feel and discover the things that she feels and discovers at the same time. I found this book totally riveting; I was engrossed from the first page to the last, but only put it down when I couldn’t bear to keep reading at night – I think this is a ‘to be read in the bright light of day’ book. Great stuff.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
cant wait to get my teeth into it.
Published 16 hours ago by E. G. LANGFORD
3.0 out of 5 stars Good read, but....
I am really undecided on this one, im new to Adam Nevill and was really impressed by Apartment 16 and even more so by The Ritual. Read more
Published 13 days ago by Tierney
5.0 out of 5 stars Could not put it down.
Never fails to disappoint ...But a basic pattern seems to be emerging in all Nevills books. I am eager for the next to see what transpires.
Published 1 month ago by Janet Webster
3.0 out of 5 stars Slightly disappointed
I bought this book having downloaded the sample from Kindle.

I was a bit disappointed. The book did seem to ramble a little and I found it hard to pin it down - maybe it... Read more
Published 3 months ago by Jane 1923
5.0 out of 5 stars Very good very english
Reminded me of the whicker man and also has eerie slightly dream like sequences ....I thoroughly enjoyed it and remain a big fan... Read more
Published 4 months ago by Muse rule!
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent addition to my horror collection.
As a fan of Adam Nevill already, I started this with high expectations and wasn't disappointed. I thought that perhaps I was becoming desensitized to horror fiction, but this story... Read more
Published 4 months ago by Rachael Coote
4.0 out of 5 stars Shudder!
Disturbing, Dark and wonderfully atmospheric! I just can't get enough of Adam Nevill! Again, just wonderful imagery, great description, creepy, creepy, creepy!!
Published 4 months ago by Linz Higginson
3.0 out of 5 stars As Usual, Nevill fluffs the landing...
I like Adam Nevill. I really do. He can write, to call him Britain's answer to Stephen King is both accurate and ludicrous in equal measure, because the ability to illicit fear in... Read more
Published 4 months ago by DR Burden
1.0 out of 5 stars awful
Thought i would try this author, and i must say i was regretting doing so. The book was boring, and very drawn out. Seemed i would never get to the end. Read more
Published 5 months ago by paula faulkner
4.0 out of 5 stars A good read.
I did enjoy this book, however I did find the second half of the book not as thrilling. It reminded me somehow of an old Hammer House of Horror movie.
Published 7 months ago by Richard A. Brocklebank
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