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The Small Hand by Susan Hill (2010)

2010s (3)

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Showing 1-5 of 32 (next | show all)
I really enjoy Susan Hill's ghost stories. The magical thing about her work is that it is not new. She is able to work within the prescribed limits of the "ghost story" and still -- though you KNOW what will eventually happen--make you shiver. ( )
  Kelley.Logan | Jan 16, 2015 |
I enjoyed the build up to the story, but was disappointed with the ending, which seemed a bit of a cop out to me. But a fairly satisfying read nevertheless - the writing is enjoyable. ( )
  Storm_Constantine | Nov 11, 2014 |
Read this in a couple of hours, it's quite short. Much better than the Woman in Black, much creepier and better plotting. ( )
  mlfhlibrarian | Feb 22, 2014 |
The small hand is a beautiful, spooky story that, unlike much of Susan Hill's writing in the past two decades reaches the high levels of mystery and suspense in her earlier novel The woman in black. Unlike The woman in black, which strongly evoked the atmosphere of Dickens, The small hand is firmly set in the present, but no less dreamy and haunted.

The small hand should particularly appeal to book lovers, as the main character is an antiquarian book dealer who buys and sells old and rare books. The framework of the story is his hunt for a first edition Shakespeare folio, which takes him to a monastery hidden away in the French Alps. The short novel has beautiful descriptions of English county houses, landscapes and the visit of the monastery.

Throughout the novel, the main character is drawn to a derelict garden, a once famous garden now not only forgotten by most people, but also buried deep in the main characters memories. As memories and visions blur and get mixed, doom is near at hand.

The small hand is a gorgeous story for readers who love subtle suspense. ( )
1 vote edwinbcn | Dec 1, 2013 |
Scary story, read it in one sitting. Atmospheric, you aren't sure what's going to happen. One of my favcourite authors. ( )
  EmmaBTate | Apr 10, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 32 (next | show all)
Veteran author Susan Hill established herself as a mistress of the ghost story with The Woman In Black, although this - like the more recent The Man In The Picture - is shorter, a novella really, one-dimensional and shorn of any sub-plot. It proves intriguing rather than chilling, although some may find the end guessable well before they get there.

Nevertheless, it’s hugely enjoyable and a perfect read for a couple of hours by the ­fireside on a dark winter’s evening, and would make an ideal Christmas stocking filler.
added by Nickelini | editDaily Mail, John Harding (Oct 7, 2010)
Ultimately, this is a wonderful piece of storytelling that does what a good story ought to do: it keeps you guessing, pulls you in. And when the climax comes, the explanation and the source of the haunting are not what you think at all. You really don't see it coming.
added by Nickelini | editthe Guardian, Jeremy Dyson (Sep 25, 2010)
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To Robert, cher ami pour beacoup d’années,
for so many things
Et aussi pour sa Claudine
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It was a little before nine o'clock, the sun was setting into a bank of smoky violet cloud, and I had lost my way.
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A chilling ghost story about a man who experiences a small hand creeping into his own as if a child has taken hold of it. He soon finds himself plagued by nightmares, panic attacks and more visits from the increasingly sinister small hand.

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