My review -
This is a really gripping story, whether or not you believe in ghosts. Lavender, the younger of three sisters, died with her grandparents in a road accident when she was nineteen. Five years later, Matt, who was about to become her fiancé, is preparing to marry, and Rose, Lavender’s sister, offers the gardens of her home, Winterscroft, for the wedding reception. Soon things begin to go wrong. Sprigs, and the scent, of lavender presage inexplicable events in the lives of the two families. Lavender, it seems, is a restless spirit who won’t stop at harming, or even killing, to get her way.
I first came across the author’s work in an anthology and loved her graceful, fluent style. In this book, my only doubt, that a happy and loving girl would become malicious and spiteful after death, was explained in a way that grounded me in the story again. I read this book in under twenty-four hours. It’s that exciting! I’d love to see it made into a film. It gives an updated nod in the direction of the Dennis Wheatley books I devoured as a teenager. I know the area in which it’s set and the detail, together with the intimate lives of the families involved, kept the story from becoming too abstracted from real life. Highly recommended for a totally different kind of murder mystery.