The Adderstane by Avalina Kreska is a gripping mystical/paranormal story which grabs your attention and doesn’t let go.
The novel started with the setting of the remote island of Fetlar. The boy Liam investigates a stone circle with the aid of a metal detector. He finds a strange ornamentally engraved golden cup. Then he has a strange mystical vision – the first of many had by the different characters in the book.
Meanwhile, a woman called Fruma – a retired teacher from the mainland – arrives at a guest house on the island which is run by Mary and Peter. Fruma settles in then investigates Tresta Bay. There she also has a mystical vision. Later she meets Reverend Mackey. They discuss the island’s dark and rich history.
That night, Fruma dreams of black water, a golden chalice, a dog, and the number repeated number 237.
The next morning, there is black water and dead fish in the bay.
“Now the sea just looked murky, like dark, stewed tea.”
There are some wonderful descriptions of the island as well as in-depth descriptions of the strange occurrences.
“A solitary skylark started singing: its long liquid warble hung in the air like a shiny bauble of melodrama.”
The Reverend Mackey tells of a father and son, Haby and Heed, back in the 1960’s and 1970’s, one who vanished another who died under mysterious circumstances.
Fruma discusses her vision with Reverend Mackey and she learns of the Papar project.
More characters are introduced with their own mystical or paranormal events occurring to them, for instance a young girl called Lucy.
Fruma is drawn further into the mystery and intrigue of the island and she does more investigating.
We are introduced to a couple of flashbacks of Haby and Heed and their strange supernatural events which caused their eventual deaths.
As the novel progresses we are drawn deeper and deeper into the mystery of the island and its inhabitants, strange events and occurrences.
The characters are strongly drawn and the story well-written. My only constructive criticism would be for some of the narrative to be edited, as it was sometimes confusing which person was speaking.
The plot drives forward to an extraordinary and very surprising ending, with not one but two or even three twists.
All in all, a fascinating and clever supernatural mystery which I can highly recommend.