Thursday, March 11, 2021

THE VANISHING AT LOXBY MANOR by Abigail Wilson, Reviewed by Rebecca Maney

"I knew something was terribly wrong the moment I stepped foot back in Loxby Manor. . . "

Instead of finding Loxby Manor to be the enchanted retreat of her childhood, Charity Halliwell has stepped foot inside a nightmare; her best friend vanishing before her very eyes, gone with the blink of an eye into the ink of night, cloaked in black, heading towards a shining light beaconing from the ruins of an old abandoned abbey. Adding to her distress, Charity's first love, Piers Cavanagh, arrives home after a long absence to assist in the search for his sister Seline, who, according to a mysterious note, is presumed to have left Loxby Manor with a stable hand.

"Believe me when I tell you, I never would have come home if I'd known you were here."

Inwardly wounded by Pier's terse words, Charity pulls herself together for the sake of the family while valiantly trying to avoid the man who had clearly severed all ties between them. But in spite of Piers assertion "that the past must remain in the past", they find their present circumstances pulling them toward each other again with an undeniable strength. However, this rejuvenated friendship cannot hide the fact that something dark and nefarious is afoot among their loosely reunited group of childhood chums, and until Charity and Pier can figure out who to trust, or even who to blame; what they might, or might not feel about each other, will have to wait. . . . and a very dangerous wait it will be.

There's great wisdom in allowing an author an adequate amount of time to develop his or her story, for the beginning of this novel did not demand the kind of attention that I was expecting, so naturally I was broadsided when a swirling conundrum arose rather perfectly in the middle of this book, the likes of which put everyone I loved in dire jeopardy. It's always a win, when a story ends well, and this story ends extremely well.

"Love is you and me deciding to stand at each other's side to face whatever comes . . . . knowing each other's faults and choosing patience time and again. . . . . It's forgetting the past, all the terrible details that weigh us down. It's forgiving ourselves and each other over and over again."
*I purchased a copy and was under no obligation to provide a positive review. 3.5 stars 


BackCover Blurb:
A story of second chances and secrets, this mysterious Regency romance will transport you to 19th-century England as one young lady reunites with her childhood love to find his missing sister. 

Her friend is missing.

After five years abroad, Charity Halliwell finally returns to Loxby Manor, the home of dear friends—and her lost love. No longer a young girl, she is now haunted by a painful secret and the demise of her dreams. Instead of the healing and happiness she hopes to find, she encounters a darkness lurking in the shadows of the once-familiar house. When her friend, Seline, disappears the very night of her arrival, Charity is determined to uncover the truth. 

Her only hope is the man who broke her heart.

Branded a coward, Piers Cavanaugh has lived the last five years as an outcast far from his family home. When his sister presumably elopes with a stable hand, Piers joins forces with an unlikely partner—the one woman he thought he’d never see again. Together they launch an investigation that leads to strange nightly meetings in the ruins of an old abbey and disturbing whispers of a secret organization. The more they learn, the more desperate the situation becomes. 

The house seems determined to keep its secrets.

As they struggle to piece together the clues, Charity and Piers also endeavor to rebuild their friendship. One cryptic letter changed everything between them. To find happiness they will have to overcome the grief and shame keeping them apart. But first they must discover why Seline vanished and confront the growing fear that she may never return. 

Settle in, because once you start The Vanishing at Loxby Manor, you won’t be able to put it down. 

Thomas Nelson Publishing, January, 2021
Available in digital ebook, paperback, and audiobook:


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