The room felt like a raw wound. There was so much misery here, a lingering malaise of frustration and grief and futility. Turning, I noticed a tall object covered with a sheet a few yards away. It was about the height and breadth of a person, which startled me. "What is that?" I asked involuntarily, and Sir James took hold of the cloth and drew it away to reveal a standing mirror.
In the reflection, I somehow did look more like Lady Garnet's portrait than myself. In the cold illumination of the moon, my eyes were darker, and the shape of my face seemed altered. A peculiar illusion caused by shadows, no doubt.
And then the reflection smiled.
Cold fear gushed through my veins, and I was frozen to the spot. In the mirror, Lady Garnet's eyes swept me up and down, and here smile widened. An avid smile. A hungry smile.
In this short story, when the ghost of a willful 18th century beauty takes possession of spirited young Felicity Reginald at a Victorian Christmas house party, mystery and danger follow...but so does romance.
This was the perfect little holiday read. A hefty amount of creepy suspense and mystery with a shot of the sweetest kind of romance, this little story was a breeze to finish. Amanda's characters are always endearing and her uncanny ability to set the stage of any atmosphere makes any of her stories a true gothic win. The only issue I had with this book is, I wish it had been longer!
Best Gothic Elements: possession, an angry ghost who may be seeking retribution, sickness and death, old family heirlooms and secrets, secret locked-away rooms, secret passageways inside the walls.