A copy of this novel was provided through NetGalley by the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not effect my opinions in any way.
There was something utterly engrossing about Abigale Hall. Before I even cracked open (or whatever the eBook equivalent of that phrase is) I knew this. Even the briefest of summaries will signal that this novel is going to be a trip. That is the most important thing you should know about this release by Lauren A. Forry: it is a trip. Creepy in all the right ways, Abigale Hall is a very solid release that keeps you on the edge of your seat and has not only a secretive air to it, but also an incredibly intelligent one.
I cannot stress how intense the story is itself. It has that dark vibe to it that a good, old fashioned thriller would and because of this darkness it's very easy to envision everything. Abigale Hall is fashioned in the way that an old, spooky movie is and it's so painfully vivid, you can't bring yourself to look away. Lauren A. Forry is a master of suspense who put forth a lot of effort to make this story bigger than its cover and description says it is. Which makes it stand out a lot more than I had imagined. Picture a historical novel mixed with a thriller and add in a solid dash of just about every genre. I don't want to make a comparison to V.C. Andrews novels (because, in truth, Lauren A. Forry has a far more descriptive and coherent way of expressing her tale) but I do think that fans Gothic fiction will appreciate this story more than the ordinary reader.
Another group of people who may find it appealing will be that of The X-Files variety. You can easily see that Lauren A. Furry, like me, grew up with the sort of oddities and mysterious one would find in an episode of the classic. Although it isn't necessarily in the same exact vein, the stories have a lot in common with each other in the way that makes it easy to see a comparison in tone (only) and I was very intrigued by this. Beyond this, as I've already said, the prose is beautiful and dark, distressing and exciting, vivid and blurry--it has a spin to it that will make you feel like you are reading a classic or watching a film. Abigale Hall bleeds off its pages and into our minds.
There are skeletons in the closet when it comes to this one and I can't get over how fun such a spine tingling novel can come. I love a good ghost story and I adore a mystery. Abigale Hall has all of this and more; crafting a wickedly compelling novel. A lot of the story feels shaky and will mess with your mind bit by bit--this makes reading it even more fun. My heart was pounding in anticipation a good chunk of the time and I found it impossible to put down.
I loved the characters and the general "what the fuck is happening?" way the narration makes you feel. Everything felt unreliable and had that ache of cruelty to it that makes you love to hate certain elements. When it comes to a good mystery, I appreciate these things as opposed to a world that is sugar coated and dull. Abigale Hall has that ache of horror and complexities that I crave for those in its genre. Something you just can't beat when it comes to leaving readers feeling unsettled or suspicious of plots. Not everyone will feel the same with me but this is something that kept me intrigued even in its weaker points.
As I've said, it has a captivating setting and the way it plays out is truly a chillingly fascinating treat. I only wish that I had read this in the autumn because if ever there was a perfect read for a stormy night, it is Abigale Hall. I daresay a lot of people will flock to this release come autumn because of it. You're welcome in advanced for the pre-Halloween read.
A lot of the time, the flaws were mostly that I felt like we'd circled in on many things more than once--which got to be a bit tedious. Abigale Hall toed the line of various genres and wasn't quite horror but still was a solidly frightening tale with a satisfying spin. Definitely a read that is worth looking into and meant for the darkest of nights!