Read Deadlight Hall by Sarah Rayne Online


A long-ago crime continues to menace the present in this spine-chilling tale of supernatural suspense." When Michael Flint is asked by a colleague to investigate a reputedly haunted house, he is intrigued. Leo Rosendale s childhood was blighted by a macabre tragedy in the grim Deadlight Hall a tragedy that occurred towards the end of World War II, involving a set of twinsA long-ago crime continues to menace the present in this spine-chilling tale of supernatural suspense." When Michael Flint is asked by a colleague to investigate a reputedly haunted house, he is intrigued. Leo Rosendale s childhood was blighted by a macabre tragedy in the grim Deadlight Hall a tragedy that occurred towards the end of World War II, involving a set of twins who vanished. The fate of Sophie and Susannah Reiss was never discovered, and Leo has never been able to forget them. When Michael, together with his fiancee Nell, begins to explore Deadlight Hall s history, he discovers that in the 1880s another pair of sisters vanished from the house and that there may also be much older and darker secrets lurking within its walls. As Michael and Nell gradually peel back the sinister layers of the Hall s unhappy past, they are unprepared for the eerie and threatening resonances they encounter nor for the shocking truth of what took place there one long-ago midnight....

Title : Deadlight Hall
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780727884718
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 240 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Deadlight Hall Reviews

  • Nev Murray
    2019-04-04 04:54

    I received an advance copy of Deadlight Hall from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This book is published by Severn House Publishers.Well now this is a book and a half. I say this because at the beginning I half hated it and half loved it. What transpired in my first venture into the world of Sarah Rayne was confirmation of the old prophecy – “Never give up on a book, because you never know where it may lead and how much pleasure you may end up getting out of it.”Deadlight Hall is a building that has stood in the Oxfordshire countryside for many years. It has a long history. Much of it hidden and secret. A builder has started to refurbish it and University Professor Leo Rosendale has asked his colleague Dr Michael Flint, an amateur ghost hunter by all accounts, to go to the building and see if he can sense anything. When Flint visits the house, he has a huge sense of foreboding and can hear a voice whispering to him. Professor Rosendale also has a silver “golem” (a Jewish statue) to sell and asks Flint’s partner Nell to look after the sale.What is the connection with Rosendale, Deadlight Hall, the golem and the ghosts? In this mosaic tale, nothing is ever as it seems. No one is ever as they seem. Everyone has secrets. Even the ghosts.Now, the most annoyingly infuriating thing about this book? The narrative. When we meet our characters at the beginning, the conversations between Flint, Nell, Rosendale and combinations of all of the above, are written in such a way that they are the most incredibly posh English people you could ever possibly meet. It’s like the entire cast from Downton Abbey in present day. It was mind-bogglingly frustrating.An example: (made up for explaining purposes) Normal speak in 2015 – Nell asked, “Would you like a cup of tea?” “Yes” said Michael. Actual speak Nell asked, “Would you like to partake of a delicious brew of the finest tea in one of ones fine bone china cups?” “That would be absolutely, splendidly wonderful my dear. I would be awfully delighted if you could add some of that delicious premium sugar as well!”Now, the reason this was so annoying is the fact that do people still speak like that? Also it took thirty words to say the same thing that one word can do. This really annoyed me to the point of nearly binning the whole book.Then, the story started to develop. I am not going to tell you anything more of the plot than I already have because I do not in any way want to spoil it for you. All I can say is that when it got into second gear, this story was simply superb.The story basically tells the history of the goings on in Deadlight Hall. It features specifically around some happenings in the late 1800’s, then jumps back to the present day, then jumps to the 1940’s during WWII. It follows the plight of children staying at the house in all time periods and the ghosts that haunt their lives.There are sections that are told through secret letters sent between 2 men during the war about sneaking Jewish children out of Poland to get them away from the clutches of the Nazis and Dr Josef Mengele. These scenes are absolutely delicious. The feelings of absolute fear they give you are outstanding. They are so harrowing that you will feel knots in the very pit of your stomach and as the story progresses, right to the very last pages, you will shed a tear or two at the outcomes.When you get past the style of the narrative this is first class. Thankfully that style only rears its ugly head when the present time characters are in discussions and the flashback narrative is very relevant to the times.There are quite a few twists in this story that at first may seem a bit confusing but all get explained as things unfold and you will not believe some of the directions the story takes.To summarise: Try to ignore that style of the narrative (if, of course, it winds you up as it did me). What develops is a ghost story of the highest order. It will creep you out and make the hairs on the back of your neck stand to attention. A lot. The way the story is written, particularly with the flashbacks to the times during the war, is absolutely divine.This is book five in a series, so I have come to the party late. I will however be checking out numbers one to four.4 stars.

  • Tracey Allen at Carpe Librum
    2019-03-31 04:49

    Deadlight Hall is the fifth novel in the Nell West and Michael Flint series of novels from author Sarah Rayne, and is due for release next year.The cover is probably the best in the series and certainly sets the tone for a creepy mystery involving a set of twins. I'm a sucker for stories about twins and this one takes place during WWII with Michael taking the lead investigative role after being asked by a colleague for advice.I enjoyed seeing the two characters Nell and Michael draw even closer, although I was surprised to find my favourite part of the novel was when Nell was considering and making plans to expand her antiques shop. I don't know why, but I really enjoyed seeing her work out if she could afford it and what she might do with the additional space.I was relieved to find the required visits to the sinister building (in this case Deadlight Hall) were fewer than in previous books, and also relieved that Beth (Nell's daughter) and Wilberforce took more of a back seat this time.Having said all of that, I did find myself yelling at Michael to download the torch app on his smart phone and use it to light up the scary basement or to use as a reading light when it began to get dark. On that note, it'd be great to see Michael and Nell making the most of some of the more modern forms of research online to uncover the dusty past. I recently discovered a website that contains the names and details of all AIF solders to have fought in WWI, and it's amazing how much effort is being dedicated to digitising the past.The conclusion of Deadlight Hall saw all of the loose threads in the mystery neatly tied up, but unfortunately I found the ending just a little too complete or perfect for my taste.

  • Jackie
    2019-04-09 22:46

    Something that always gets me with Sarah Rayne is how well she does horror - not just of the supernatural elements of her books, although those are spooky enough, but the horror of the lives we lead and the experiences we go through. This is something Rayne has done with, I think, all of the Nell West and Michael Flint books. The stories of the past that seep and bleed through to the present are often horrifying and unimaginable, leaving the reader amazed that anyone could go through something like that - and often, those anyones don't survive, leaving the haunts and ghosts that Nell and Michael encounter.I particularly liked Deadlight Hall because I have a passion for WWII, and pretty much devour anything to do with it. I wasn't aware that Deadlight Hall would have any references to it, so it was a great delight as a reader to get that particular bit of the story. In fact, the portion of Deadlight Hall dedicated to the Reiss twins and Leo Rosendale, as well as Schönbrunn, was something I found scarier than the ghost of Deadlight Hall. Mengele, the Angel of Death in Auschwitz, is someone that I know a great deal about, and reading about how the Reiss twins were wanted by him, and hunted as well, left me anxious for them.I felt the end of the book a little hurried, but I was glad to see that the Reiss twins and Leo were reunited in the end.

  • Damaskcat
    2019-04-20 00:40

    A colleague of Michael Flint's - Leo Rosendale - asks him to take a look at Deadlight Hall which is being turned into luxury apartments. Leo was there as a child and fears that past crimes will affect anyone living there in the future. Michael visits the Hall and feels there is definitely something there so he starts to research its history. Nell - Michael's girlfriend - agrees to handle the sale of a silver figure which Leo wants to sell and finds herself engrossed in its past history.This is a very spooky story about a house which seems to have always been blighted by evil and as its past is gradually revealed I found myself turning the pages faster and faster to find out what happened and when. The narrative is interspersed with diaries, letters and newspaper cuttings from the past which really brings the whole thing to life.I enjoyed reading this mystery and was glad I wasn't reading it at night otherwise I'd have been switching on all the lights to make sure nothing could hide in dark corners! If you like mysteries with a touch of the supernatural then this one may be for you. It is part of a series featuring Michael Flint but the books can be read in any order. I received a free copy of this book from NetGalley for review purposes.

  • March Shoggoth Madness The Haunted Reading Room
    2019-04-11 23:42

    REVIEW: DEADLIGHT HALL by SARAH RAYNE Whenever I become aware of a new novel by Sarah RAYNE, I leap to read it. I have read.her books for several years, with nary a disappointment. I always come away with appreciation of the depths a breadth of her novels, and also thoroughly frightened! How true this is of her newest, DEADLIGHT HALL, which kept me awake late to finish, then still awake to ponder. Ms. Rayne, who has a firm grasp of history, interleaves a horrible macrocosm of World War II, with an equally horrifying and stomach-churning thread which had its ugly fatal roots in the last quarter of the 19th century. In contrasting Dr. Josef Mengele, the infamous Angel of Death at Auschwitz in Poland with a certain 19th century prosperous British gentleman, the reader sees into.the evil recesses of the human heart, in macrocosm and in microcosm.

  • Amy
    2019-04-05 22:09

    This was a random find at a library used book sale, and what a good find it was! Wonderful story, lots of history and kept me on the edge of my seat! Can't wait to read more in this story.

  • Nadine Julie
    2019-04-21 02:50

    While I've read all of the Nell West/Michael Flint stories and generally looked forward to them, Deadlight Hall was a total disappointment.I get that it's hard to come up with haunted house stories in inventive ways in the same series with the same two protagonists. I mean, how many haunted houses can two people run into, really? The struggle is real. But this book is so many shades of terrible. (Also, the fact they're still questioning their belief in hauntings after so many haunted experiences is fairly ridiculous. But I digress.)There's not an iota of tense or suspense to be found in the present tense storyline. The truth is that the haunted house stories are but a framing device for Rayne. A way to keep writing one-off novels in the same genre while convincing the audience they're a series. The problem is if your readers want a series, you have to get them INVESTED in the characters who make up your framing device. When Rayne went to herself, 'Why don't I have Michael sit on these steps, read this diary and find out what happened while he's in absolutely no danger? That sounds like a splendid idea!', why did no one tell her this was a cop-out? You are not Emily Bronte and this is not Wuthering Heights: your framing device is just not very good. Yes, we wanted this series from Rayne! But she obviously hates writing it and she certainly doesn't excel at it, because Nell and Michael are becoming gradually more boring, insipid, tenuously connected to the main plot and, frankly, syrupy with each book. Rayne is hamstrung by these two idiots at this point, and I would've been happier if she'd pulled the trigger and killed one of them off.I've always found it hard to believe that Nell manages to make a living that can support her daughter given the infrequency of her antique sales, but suspension of disbelief is the least of my worries here.There is so much more potential for the main plot (i.e. the actual purpose of the book) to make a story that is at least interesting, if not good. But it never kicks into gear. Poor Leo's plotline is stuck in wet cement. Even Nell and Michael don't even get sent off on a road trip this time to find their haunted building. It's conveniently local. Isn't that handy?The early refrain in the book, 'And of course, there had been Sophie,' sets up a payoff that not only never comes but actually never even makes sense, because Leo has no explained or demonstrated attachment to one twin more than the other. And as a child, he never expresses romantic feelings toward either of them. It's meant to pique our interest. Gosh, what history does Leo have with this Sophie? Must be juicy, romantic and painful. Only it's not. At all. Seriously.We're led up the merry path to believe this is a novel about finding these twins who went missing from Deadlight Hall; instead, midway, we change tack and we're given a half-baked rip-off of Jane Eyre's madwoman in the attic coupled with shades of Rayne's own earlier work, The Death Chamber. The writing style of the exposition passages in certain fiery, gruesome scenes are reminiscent of scenes in Rayne's highly dubious and rather embarrassing novel (first written as Frances Gordon), The Burning Altar.The ending of the main plot (revealed after all of that action-packed step-sitting diary-reading business) is so very twee. Its indirectness is another reminder that Rayne has completely forgotten how to show and not tell. I rolled my eyes, literally.Adding to the overwhelming 'can't be stuffed' impression is the fact that the book is too short. It's barely a few hours worth of diversion. Essentially, there is a whole lot of nothing going on here and it is frustrating. The plot could have been successful, but Rayne's authorial chronic fatigue syndrome saw that it was nothing other than lethargic.I've stopped caring about Nell's memories of her long-dead husband. I don't much give a toss about Wilberforce's adventures. Nell's daughter is due for a temper tantrum, too. I could've done with some actual tension, or danger, or perhaps Rayne giving over the prize (i.e. an actual well-paced, carefully plotted novel) that was promised.Instead, Deadlight Hall is a real stinker.

  • Eileen
    2019-04-09 01:49

    Suspenseful yet believable mystery. I'd read her books again!

  • Louise Morris
    2019-03-28 03:44

    Another great book from this series. I hope she has another one in the works!

  • LJ
    2019-04-19 03:08

    First Sentence: “I don’t mean to imply the house is haunted,” said Professor Rosendale Firmly.Michael Flight is asked to investigate Deadlight Hall, a building currently being renovated that had been used as an orphanage and hospital during WWII. At that time, a pair of twin sisters, Jewish refugees, disappeared for the hall. Going back into the house’s history, Michael and his fiancée Nell, discover another pair of sisters who vanished in the 1880s. In spite of the fact that no one now lives at the Hall, it quickly becomes clear that the house is not empty.Rayne immediately achieves just the right atmosphere and sense that things could be perfectly fine…or perhaps not.One disadvantage of reading an eGalley, is that one lacks the chapter headings and other breaks which usually indicate a change in scene or time period. Even so, the device used to convey some of the information is interesting, but it doesn’t really allow to story to unfold page by page.The suspense is very well done; gripping and decidedly creepy, and is enjoyably offset by the inclusion of Flint’s fictional cat, Wilberforce, and his adventures. It leaves one questioning whether things are natural or supernatural and what is motivating them. There is also a fascinating concept of “The Silent Minute,” quite different here from the historical Silent Minute from WWII where people were asked to devote one minute of prayer for peace at nine o’clock each evening.Rayne’s descriptions are wonderfully atmospheric…”The poison book was in good condition….There was, though, the feeling that the light which fell over the pages was tinged with the flickering radiance of candlelight, wax-scented and dim, or even the bad-smelling gaslight that came later.” “Deadlight Hall” is a intriguing, creepy story with lots of twists and is sure to entertain anyone who appreciates things that go bump in the night.DEADLIGHT HALL (Susp/Myst/Para – Dr. Michael Flint – England – Contemp/1940s) – VGRayne, Sarah – 5th in seriesSevern House – April 2015

  • Judy Lesley
    2019-04-11 01:46

    Any novel that raises my heart rate as this one did.....well, that book deserves five stars in my opinion. There are so many mysteries to be solved here which cross over from one generation to another and twine about the various inhabitants of Deadlight Hall that there aren't many moments to catch your breath. Part mystery and part horror story this is one that will absolutely keep readers who enjoy the horror aspect glued to the pages of the book.I enjoy having the paranormal mixed into mystery stories but if they aren't done with a fine hand of realism and believability they can be a dire experience. After reading another novel in this series (The Whispering - A Haunted House Mystery) I had some idea of the quality of writing I could expect. I was definitely not disappointed. Moving easily through the history of the house from the 1870s, to the 1940s, and into modern times this spooky old place came to life on the pages. Told through the research done by Michael Flint with material found through official documents, letters, and journals this story moves backward and forward through all three time periods and could have been difficult to keep straight. That was not allowed to happen because the main character always managed the introduction to the continuing investigation of Deadlight Hall so I always knew into which area of time I was headed. When I saw the title of the book it struck me as rather unusual so I was glad to see that there is an explanation for deadlight in the story.This was an enjoyable reading experience for me and there is no need to have read any of the other novels in the series, this one is easily a stand alone offering. The normalcy of the lives of Michael Flint, his colleague Leo Rosedale, both professors at Oriel College, Oxford and Nell West and her daughter Beth was a great contrast with the mysterious house and all that happened in it during its long history. This was truly one strange haunted house.I received an ARC of this novel through NetGalley.

  • Denise
    2019-04-22 04:58

    3.0 out of 5 stars -- Mystery surrounding a haunted house in England, the site of a series of unusual events and an old crime. A paranormal story of Jewish children confined to a very unpleasant old house after being smuggled through the underground to England during World War II. Although they had initially been placed with families, Deadlight Hall became an isolation hospital when an epidemic of meningitis spread through the community just after Christmas one year. The story centers on the disappearance of two twin girls, Sophie and Susanna Reiss, who were thought to be sought by the Angel of Death himself, Dr. Joseph Mengele. Many years later, Leo Rosendale, one of the children who escaped Germany with the twin girls, brings the story to his Oxford colleague, Michael Flint, when he hears that Deadlight Hall is to be converted to new living spaces. Leo feels the place is haunted by old ghosts who know what happened there, and he wants to know what, if anything, can be found about his twin friends. He has a little golem engraved with their initials and says that the girls had a matching one with his -- they had traded in a pact of reassurance of their friendship and the golem is a sort of relic that is understood to provide safety. Did the girls get taken by agents of Dr. Mengele or were they killed in the house? In a series of letters and other things that Leo and Michael find, tantalizing bits of detail emerge that deepen their concerns about the house and its previous inhabitants.The narrative shifts back and forth in time and slowly builds suspense as the reader becomes involved in the mystery of what actually happened in that house. The conclusion is satisfying and somber -- a reminder of a time when there were good people in the midst of the horror that was World War II. I'd recommend it to anyone who enjoys paranormal and stories about that time.Thank you to NetGalley and Severn House for the e-book ARC to review.

  • Janette Fleming
    2019-03-26 03:04

    A long-ago crime continues to menace the present in this spine-chilling tale of supernatural suspense.When Michael Flint is asked by a colleague to investigate a reputedly haunted house, he is intrigued. Leo Rosendale’s childhood was blighted by a macabre tragedy in the grim Deadlight Hall – a tragedy that occurred towards the end of World War II, involving a set of twins who vanished. The fate of Sophie and Susannah Reiss was never discovered, and Leo has never been able to forget them.When Michael, together with his fiancee Nell, begins to explore Deadlight Hall’s history, he discovers that in the 1880s another pair of sisters vanished from the house – and that there may also be much older and darker secrets lurking within its walls.As Michael and Nell gradually peel back the sinister layers of the Hall’s unhappy past, they are unprepared for the eerie and threatening resonances they encounter – nor for the shocking truth of what took place there one long-ago midnight.Miss Rayne is a storyteller par excellence, you know you are going to get weaving multiple threads of plot set in different eras that come together to make up a satisfyingly, atmospheric story. Also a trademark of this author is a fascinating exploration/explanation of some archaic saying or behaviour such as “The Silent Minute” that takes place in this novel. However, I cannot abide Nell West and Michael Flint, they are just so annoyingly twee! I much prefer her stand alone supernatural novels and her little known Celtic fantasy novels she wrote in the 90s under the pseudonym Bridget Wood stunning...

  • Caroline Wilson
    2019-04-09 01:56

    Deadlight Hall, the fifth installment in author Sarah Rayne’s series featuring Dr. Michael Flint, blends the horrors of the Holocaust with a mysterious haunted house just outside Oxford. When Michael is contacted by Dr. Leo Rosendale, a colleague at Oriel College in Oxford, the request is not altogether strange for the seasoned ghosthunter. Leo is not very forthcoming with the details, but in short, he wants Michael to investigate Deadlight Hall, a crumbling estate being renovated into luxury condos. Michael’s first trip to the Hall results in some fairly strange experiences, and so the hunt is on to uncover the deadly past. And believe me, this house has more bodies to its credit than a serial killer!I’m a sucker for a haunted house mystery and so when I saw Deadlight Hall pop up on Netgalley, I was quick to request it. I am certainly glad that I did. I devoured the book and loved the protagonists Michael and his lady friend Nell. I’m also a fan of Michael’s grumpy, trouble-making cat Wilberforce. The plot was brilliantly put together; I was guessing until the very end, trying to put together the various ends, and was pretty wrong on all accounts. Though this is the fifth book in the series, it stands alone easily. I for one will be purchasing the four other books in the series. Highly recommended.

  • Ionia
    2019-04-22 00:49

    Originally my review for this book was going to be 3 or possibly 3.5 stars. I love a dark Gothic novel as much as the next person, but in places, I felt like this book was almost too dark--dismal even. In the end though, salvation came in at the last second and I was forced to reconsider. Whilst I loved that the author managed to give life to this book with so much history (Nazi Germany being a favourite study subject of mine anyway,) I thought she lost the usual excitement and eagerness for the unexpected I usually experience with her books in the absolute darkness of this book's first half. Still, this became later on in the story, what I expect from this author. She is a genius at tying up loose ends and making everything in the previous pages make sense by the final page. This book is filled with curiosity and engaging characters that the reader wants to see do well and escape the terrors that befall them. The historical sections were well researched and believable, and although I don't recommend reading this book at bedtime in an old, creepy house, I do recommend the book for true lovers of Gothic horror. 4 out of 5 spine tingles. Plus, there is a crazy cat with a bad attitude. You have to love that. This review is based on a complimentary copy from the publisher and provided through Netgalley. All opinions are my own.

  • Annette Gisby
    2019-04-04 05:08

    Like most of Sarah Rayne's books in these haunted house series, part of the narrative takes place in the present and part in the past. In this instance the past was during WWII and in the middle to late Victorian era.The story was very imaginative and with quite a few twists and turns that I didn't see coming at all. The title house Deadlight Hall is as creepy as its name suggests and the building is almost a character in itself.I don't think I've ever read a Sarah Rayne book that I've disliked at all. Usually, I start and then just have to keep reading, and it was the same with this one. Stayed up as late as I could, till about 1 in the morning, and I was about two thirds through the book by then and just couldn't keep my eyes open.If you like ghost stories and haunted houses, you'll love this.

  • Laura
    2019-03-30 21:44

    I returned to this series after a two-year hiatus and I'm so glad I did. Two sets of sisters disappear from spooky Deadlight Hall sixty years apart, and Oxford don Michael Flint and antiques dealer Nell West work together to figure out what happened to them. I enjoyed the mystery's academic setting as much as I appreciated Nell's and Michael's characteristic English reserve. The pacing of this book kept me reading into the wee hours to finish it! Absence really does make the heart grow fonder...

  • K
    2019-04-19 05:02

    "Because it's a cold night, and a long stretch of spooking ahead of us." And spooky runs through Deadlight Hall like a virus. Has to be one of the best haunted houses ever. I enjoyed the way Rayne tells the story through letters, and brings it all together in the end. The Nell pieces of the story are comforting while the Michael investigations and the letters that take us back in time to Nazi Germany and golems and twins being hunted by a madman - truly frightening on so many levels. And that furnace...YIKES!! p.s. many thanks to Net Galley for the e-galley.

  • Elizabeth
    2019-04-02 22:49

    Fabulously atmospheric, with Rayne's customarily supple combination of the macabre and the romantic--the Gothic, truly. I absolutely loved the ending, and how all the story lines came together. Motherhood, guilt, mistakes (horrific ones) and a place saturated with despair...what's not to love?

  • Helen Carolan
    2019-04-08 23:46

    yet another fab read from Sarah. Michael Flint and Nell West are back with another haunted house to explore. as always with Sarah's books scary and gripping. Deadlight Hall is being converted into flats but it hides a terrible secret. Michael and Nell try to find out.

  • Margee
    2019-04-05 21:49

    Nazis, ghosts, and superannuated household utilities conspire in a chilling tale, when partners in occult investigation, Nell West and Michael Flint, try to piece together a legend concerning child refugees from WWII Germany housed in a crumbling manor in rural England.

  • Evelyn
    2019-04-11 01:10

    Deadlight Hall: A Haunted House by Sarah Rayne. Enjoyed reading this book but for the first couple chapters I was wondering if I had already read it. Then I figured it out that it was similar to another book that I read by Sarah Rayne. But it was still enjoyable.

  • Sue
    2019-04-22 02:42

    Love this author and this series. Although the subject matter was uncomfortable at times - experimentation and the concentration camps - it was never sensationalised. Thanks for the ending!!

  • Trena
    2019-04-03 01:09

    Strange but drew me in

  • Sheri Stern
    2019-03-30 03:44

    Sarah has done it again. I look forward to the next Nell and Michael adventure and this one did not disappoint.

  • Deanne
    2019-04-26 00:01

    Not really much of a mystery, and a little disappointing that the characters spent very little time in the haunted house.

  • Kaethe
    2019-04-21 03:10

    library copy

  • Louise Taylor
    2019-04-17 22:10

    That was so so creepy! So many shocks and horrific tales all linked to one event! Full of suspense!