Friday, 16 May 2014
The Voices by F.R. Tallis
In the scorching summer of 1976 – the hottest since records began – Christopher Norton, his wife Laura and their young daughter Faye settle into their new home in north London. The faded glory of the Victorian house is the perfect place for Norton, a composer of film soundtracks, to build a recording studio of his own. But soon in the long, oppressively hot nights, Laura begins to hear something through the crackle of the baby monitor. First, a knocking sound. Then come the voices. F. R. Tallis' background as a clinical psychologist sets his writing apart. He knows exactly how to scare you . . .
I love reading horror so was really looking forward to reading The Voices by FR Tallis. The story is set back in 1976 and is about a pregnant couple, Christopher and Laura, who buy a new house in preparation for the birth of their child. However, the house has been empty for some time and needs some renovation work done before they can move in. This is when you get the sense that all may not be as it seems. When clearing out the attic Christopher uncovers some items......Once the couple move in with their baby daughter ghostly going on's begin.
Christopher composes soundtracks for films and tv and in his studio he begins to hear voices which a recorded on his equipment. Laura also begins to hear voices and noises coming from the baby monitor.
As the book progresses we see their relationship become more strained and we also meet their friends Simon and Amanda who also have an effect on the characters and their relationships.
I don't want to give away too much about the story line as it is the unknown and unpredicted twists and turns that make it the excellent book that it is. I didn't always predict what was going to happen which was brilliant.
The book is well written and I enjoyed the style of writing used by FR Tallis. I felt it flowed easily and he appears to have mastered the talent of telling a story where you warm to the characters but equally able to tell a story that creeps me out. I do a lot of my reading before sleep and a couple of nights I definitely felt unnerved when switching off the light.
As I mentioned earlier in the review, the story is unpredictable and I enjoyed that. I thought I had it sussed and it was quite exciting when I didn't. I raced through the book wanting to know what happens next and I liked the ending as I could imagine a sequel.
The book reminded me of why I enjoy horror stories and I will certainly be moving another up my reading list. I usually read horror that is more gory and a blood fest rather than a ghost story so this was refreshing. It reminded me of The Woman in Black and I could certainly see this made into a film. I would certainly recommend this book and read more by this author.
Thank you to Pan Macmillan who provided a copy of this book via Netgalley in return for an honest review.