Spindrift (PIU’s Review)

Spindrift.Title: Spindrift
Author: Amy Rae Durreson
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: 12th August, 2016
Genre(s): Ghosts, Mystery, Romance
Page Count: 200
Reviewed by: PIU
Heat Level: 3 flames out of 5
Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5

When lonely artist Siôn Ruston retreats to the seaside village of Rosewick Bay, Yorkshire, to recover from a suicide attempt, he doesn’t expect to encounter any ghosts, let alone the one who appears in his bedroom every morning at dawn. He also doesn’t expect to meet his ghost’s gorgeous, flirty descendant working at the local museum… and the village pub, and as a lifeboat volunteer. But Mattie’s great-great-grandfather isn’t the only specter in Rosewick Bay, and as Siôn and Mattie investigate an ill-fated love affair from a bygone era, they begin a romance of their own, one that will hopefully escape the tragedy Mattie’s ancestor suffered.

But the ghosts aren’t the only ones with secrets, and the things Siôn and Mattie are keeping from each other threaten to tear them apart. And all the while, the dead are biding their time, because the curse of Rosewick Bay has never been broken. If the ghosts are seen on the streets, local tradition foretells a man will drown before the summer’s end.

Spindrift is a ghost story which also features a beautiful romance and a compelling mystery behind the haunting. It was creepy and sometimes scary but the romance and the mystery balances out the creepiness perfectly.

Siôn Ruston is a lonely man who after a serious depressing episode is now spending time getting his life back together in the Spindrift cottage. He is an artist too and spends all his day capturing the picturesque town in his canvas. But his life is still far from being on the tracks. Siôn finds a spark of hope and life after he meets the young grandson of the cottage owner, Mattie Jopling. Mattie is a shameless flirt and also the life of the party with his ever present smile and good humour.

Just before he meets Mattie, Siôn gets haunted by a ghost who has a startling resemblance to the young Mattie. Siôn finds out about the local legend of the ghost of Mathew Jopling, Mattie’s ancestor haunting the town. But this time Siôn and Mattie is haunted not only by one but two ghosts. Siôn repeatedly sees a drowned man who after much research is discovered as Joshua Haymer, the alleged lover of the already married Mathew Jopling.

Siôn and Mattie’s budding romance is punctuated with their research and effort in uncovering the history of Mathew Jopling and Joshua Haymer, two unfortunate men lost at sea. As they dig more into the past, truths about their own past comes to light. Mattie and Siôn both have secrets and they need to work through them together to solidify their fragile romance.

The ghosts of Mathew Jopling and Joshua Haymer were a big part of the story. Their presence is tangible and they have a history which oddly resembles the current situation between Siôn and Mattie. The gradual uncovering of Mathew and Joshua’s story runs parallel to Siôn and Mattie’s relationship. This entire read reminded me of the 2002 film Possession. The thrill of discovering bits and pieces of a past forbidden affair no one knows along with a growing romance in the present time is like an adventure to uncover the unknown.

The setting of this story was what kept me glued to the book more than the mystery. I fell in love with the small sea side village of Rosewick Bay, Yorkshire. The natural beauty of the place described through Siôn’s paintings and then the deadly but alluring pull of the sea was perfect for a ghost story and a romance. The various accounts of ships getting rescued and all the fearless volunteers ready to save lives gives a very authentic and strong feel to the village. The village folk were also very nice. Their community was tight knit and supportive and not judgemental at all. Being gay in a small town always attracts some homophobic crap from the residents but in this story everyone was supporting and accepting of Siôn and Mattie’s love.

The ending was a little over the top and dramatic considering that the villain plaguing the couple and the one helping them are both ghosts. The last encounter between the two ghosts and then Caitlyn felt a little tacky and reduced the scare factor a little bit. This was the only complaint I had with the story.

I was drawn in by the story and I was enthralled by the romance, excited by the history and then scared by the killer ghosts. It was a perfect combination of horror with romance. I am not a big fan of ghost stories but this book was something else. I would definitely recommend this book.

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Review copy of Spindrift provided by Dreamspinner Press in exchange of an honest review.

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