The Vanishing takes place in Minnesota's deep, dark woods. Julia Bishop finds herself at Havenwood, an immense estate that sits on thousands of acres of woods and is quite isolated. The original owner, Andrew McCullough built the estate after making his riches in the fur trade in the 1800's. Julia's been asked to take care of the current owner, Amaris Sinclair--a famous horror writer who's presumed dead.
Sounds complicated, right? There's a lot going on in this novel. Julia is recovering from a horrible scandal in Chicago. Her husband, known as the Midwest Bernie Madoff, has killed himself and left her to deal with the anger and unending financial mess of his ex-clients. She's losing everything when Adrian Sinclair knocks on her front door and invites her to leave it all behind and take the job of caretaker to his mother. Julia takes him up on the offer and quickly finds herself feeling strangely at home at Havenwood. Something, however, is not right. In the darkened hallways and library, Julia hears a little girl singing, sees paintings move, and feels something evil in the air.
There is a big mystery here, and you have to read til the very end to find out what it is. It all involves mediums, seances, and a horrible night 100 years before that changed Havenwood forever.
Fans of Simone St. James and novels that feature an otherworldly plot will love this! I've read all three of Wendy Webb's novels and have loved them all.
Rating: 7/10 for a just-creepy-enough story with elements of local lore and a great gothic feel.
Available in paperback and ebook.