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Tuesday, October 19, 2021

Review: Mirrorland by Carole Johnstone

by Carole Johnstone
Narrated by Katie Leung

Thank you for this gifted listen.

Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio
Publish Date: April 20, 2021
11 hrs 38 min
Genres: Thriller, Mystery, Suspense

A thrilling work of psychological suspense with the startling twists of Gone Girl and the haunting emotional power of Room, Mirrorland is the story of twin sisters, the man they both love, and the dark childhood they can’t leave behind.

Cat lives in Los Angeles, about as far away as she can get from her estranged twin sister El and No. 36 Westeryk Road, the imposing gothic house in Edinburgh where they grew up. As girls, they invented Mirrorland, a dark, imaginary place under the pantry stairs full of pirates, witches, and clowns. These days Cat rarely thinks about their childhood home, or the fact that El now lives there with her husband Ross.

But when El mysteriously disappears after going out on her sailboat, Cat is forced to return to the grand old house, which has scarcely changed in twenty years. No. 36 Westeryk Road is still full of shadowy, hidden corners, and at every turn Cat finds herself stumbling on long-held secrets and terrifying ghosts from the past. Because someone—El?—has left Cat clues all over the house: a treasure hunt that leads right back to Mirrorland, where she knows the truth lies crouched and waiting...

A twisty, dark, and brilliantly crafted thriller about love and betrayal, redemption and revenge, Mirrorland is a propulsive, page-turning debut about the power of imagination and the price of freedom.

My Review:

Woah woah woah - another 5 star read from me?! Either I'm feeling very generous during these holidays (and Spooky Season is MY FAVE) or I'm just coming across some very good books.  And yet ANOTHER character driven novel.  WHO AM I?!

I tried listening to this a few months back but my brain wouldn't allow me the patience with the Scottish accent - my brain is weird.  But I finally went back and although I couldn't listen to it at warp speed like I can with other audiobooks, I'm here to tell you that the narrator truly makes this SUCH an enjoyable experience - look her up!! The voice became very mesmerizing and her performance is outstanding. Yeah, I'm a fan. 😊

This story. It's dark, moody, atmospheric and half the time I had no idea WTF was happening. Did I somehow end up in Mirrorland? Did Cat bring me with her in her insane journey? DID I LOVE EVERY MINUTE OF IT?! Ok ok let me back up. I love dark fairy tales and the presence of Mirrorland is in itself its own entity. A living, breathing character that was breathing down my neck and making the tiny hairs stand at attention. And these twins. W....T....F.... I thought my family had issues. 

Listen, there's a LOT to unpack from this story.  There's no levity at all in this read. It's harrowing and seeps right into your skin and you HAVE to pay attention or you'll easily get lost. I would highly recommend the audiobook for this because if I'm being honest - I'm not sure how reading this with my eyes would have gone. What I do know is that my ears are happy and I'm kicking myself for not listening to this sooner. Kids - don't put yourself in a position to where you'll need to kick yourself, k?


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