This Gothic curiosity wriggles vividly in your mind's eye, unleashing a memorable torrent of eccentric characters on your senses. It begins with the protagonist's mother being released from psychiatric care after cunningly controlling her behaviour when the medical staff are present, and she is completely unaware that her husband's career and finances have taken a disasterous turn. The solution comes from her father, into whose manor they move, and a curious ambience develops, which can be pulled awry at any time by her father's (literally) mesmerising pocket watch and his devious skill with it. Theodore Stubb's superior hypnosis technique isn't only a party trick - a trick some guests prefer not to participate in - but it also sets in motion a disturbing chain of events that has unimaginable consequences.
Skilfully written and developed, this is not your average Gothic tale of possession - it is creepy, hilarious, tragic, and surreal in turn, and sometimes any combination of things. Refreshingly unpredictable, it is a throughly enjoyable read.