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The Shadowy Horses Paperback – October 2, 2012
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"This poetic novel will seduce readers with its beautiful prose and lush, vivid descriptions of the Scotland shore." - RT Book Reviews
"Do you love romantic suspense? Do you ever feel nostalgic about the Victoria Holt and Mary Stewart books you read in your girlhood? Are you apt to re-read Daphne DuMaurier's Rebecca once a year? If so, you will very likely enjoy Susanna Kearsley's fine new novel, The Shadowy Horses." - The Romance Reader
"So a smooth, descriptive style, characters who breathe on the page, attention paid to the details of the action and the characters' professions, a little humor, an intense growing love, a willingness on my part to believe the paranormal, they all lead to a great reading experience." - Dear Author
"I look forward to reading it and collecting this author's back list" - Obsessed with Books
"If you'd like a book to put you in mind of the Mary Stewarts of yesteryear, but which has a poetic style and energy all its own, I recommend The Shadowy Horses. Lass, I don't ken what more you could ask for." - All About Romance
"This was a fun enjoyable read, that sucked me on the first few pages. Easy to lose yourself in, and nicely paced." - Jenny Loves to Read
"If you have read Kearsley's books before and enjoyed them, you will enjoy this one as well. It is an entertaining book that I had a hard time putting down. For those who have not read a book by Susanna Kearsley yet, I highly recommend starting with this one, it is a great book!" - The Book Garden
"The last 30 pages were intense, heartbreaking, and wonderfully satisfying; I couldn't have asked for a better conclusion." - Luxury Reading
"This one is going in my keeper pile" - Burton Book Review
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Top Customer Reviews
This is an excellent, fast moving book that I was sorry to see end. The descriptions of life in a small Scottish coastal village were excellent and very true to life. The characters were colourful and likeable and it is not at all hard to picture them at the Ship Hotel with a pint or gathered around the kitchen having a hearty Scottish breakfast.
Pour a cup of tea and make plans to curl up for a day by the fire reading this book, you won't regret it.
The Shadowy Horses is set in a small town on the east coast of Scotland and is, as mentioned above, a blend of literature, romance and suspense. Kearsley's writing is masterful, as she manages to tell a modern tale of a haunted archaeology site without ever going over the top. At several points the characters actually attempt to communicate with the ghost of a Roman legionnaire, and not one time did I ever want to roll my eyes; quite a feat for a writer, in my opinion.
The weakest part of this book -- and the reason I am not giving it 5 stars -- is the suspense element. The suspense is so mild as to be almost non-existent. So if you're looking for a spine-tingling, keep-you-on-the-edge-of-your-seat type of book this is definitely not it.
The romance is low-key, also, which is fine with me. But again, if you're looking for a heart-stopping, blood-racing, titillating love scene you're not going to find it here. Nevertheless, the romance is there, as the heroine is faced with not just one but two admirers (three, if you count an eight-year-old boy), both drop-dead gorgeous (we should all be so lucky, huh?). And one of them -- I don't want to say who as that could be a spoiler -- did make my heart beat just a little bit faster. :)
Kearsley's greatest strength is in her dialogue. This is the aspect where many writers of fiction -- especially those writing in a contemporary setting -- lose me. So many authors can't seem to get the dialogue right; I don't know if it's from trying too hard, or what, but they end up making everybody sound overwrought and as though they just need to take a tranquilizer and lie down for a while. But Kearsley's dialogue is spot-on; it is smooth but at the same time it absolutely sparkles. It is witty, and in a couple of places even laugh-out-loud funny.
This is a highly entertaining and page-turning book that will completely transport you to another time and place for a day or two (or however long it takes you to read it). If you're like me it won't take long, as I could hardly put the book down and stayed up waaaaaay too late last night to finish it. I can't remember the last time a book made me do that....
This was my first read by Susanna Kearsley but definitely won't be my last.
That said, I still enjoyed and was glad I read it.