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by Catriona Ward

Book Club Recommendations Books with reviews by our Reader Review Panel Debut Books of the Month eBooks of the Month Historical Fiction Sci-Fi and Fantasy

LoveReading View on Rawblood

Shortlisted for the Best Horror Novel at the British Fantasy Awards 2016.

October 2015 Debut of the Month.

A ghostly, achingly sad, yet excruciatingly beautiful debut. This is effectively one story, however there are a number of narrators covering a period of 80 years from 1839; at times it feels as though you are being kept at a considerable distance, at others as though you are at their shoulder, seeing, listening, feeling. The stories are not told sequentially, instead time meanders, darts, pulls and pushes, which initially creates a feeling of confusion, yet, yet…Rawblood gradually takes a grip and absorbs you, as a malevolent presence hovers over the pages, waiting. The house of Rawblood set within Dartmoor sits centrally in the storyline, described so vividly it feels as though you can reach out, touch it. As understanding grows, a fear develops for what is to come, for what has already been. To describe Rawblood just as a ghost story feels like an injustice, Catriona Ward has created a moving, original tale of love and destruction, one that is truly enthralling and memorable. ~ Liz Robinson

Liz Robinson

Rawblood Synopsis

She comes in the night. She looks into your eyes. One by one, she has taken us all. For generations they have died young. Now Iris and her father are the last of the Villarca line. Their disease confines them to their lonely mansion on Dartmoor; their disease means they must die alone. But Iris breaks her promise to hide from the world. She dares to fall in love. And only then do they understand the true horror of the Villarca curse.

Rawblood Reader Reviews

In addition to our Lovereading expert opinion some of our Reader Review Panel were also lucky enough to read and review this title. You can click here to read the full reviews.

  • Sallyann Spittle - 'Even though this is a love story, some parts were quite terrifying and very sinister – do not read whilst you are alone at night.  Praise to Catriona Ward for producing a brilliant piece of fiction.'
  • Sarah Musk - 'A dark book to read full of difficult subjects.  A strong supernatural theme lends it a menacing air and I would not recommend reading it if you have a sensitive disposition!'
  • Emma Barton - 'This is an atmospheric tale about one family and the curse they suffer throughout several generations.'
  • Carol Peace - 'Hauntingly good.'
  • Kerry Bridges - '[This] may well be for some people [but] I would not recommend it.'
  • Cyllene Griffiths - 'Walpole, Poe, Shelley and Stoker would be springing out their graves in true Gothic fashion to read this new novel. It is Gothic Horror for the 21st century and superbly done...'

Rawblood Press Reviews

'From Victorian ghost story to anti-war polemic and back again: I raged, wept and hid under the bed covers. As full of science as it is the supernatural, this is a hauntingly brilliant virtuoso performance.' -- Emma Healey author of ELIZABETH IS MISSING

'Gloriously dark and claustrophobic, Rawblood is a haunting gothic novel of intelligence and complexity. It has many echoes of the classics but is entirely its own book.' Essie Fox, author of THE SOMNAMBULIST

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All versions of this book

ISBN: 9781780229140
Publication date: 08/09/2016
Publisher: Weidenfeld & Nicolson an imprint of Orion Publishing Co
Format: Paperback

ISBN: 9780297609643
Publication date: 24/09/2015
Publisher: Weidenfeld & Nicolson an imprint of Orion Publishing Co
Format: Hardback

Book Information

ISBN: 9780297609643
Publication date: 24th September 2015
Author: Catriona Ward
Publisher: Weidenfeld & Nicolson an imprint of Orion Publishing Co
Format: Hardback
Genres: Book Club Recommendations, Reader Reviewed Books, Debuts of the Month, eBook Favourites, Historical Fiction, Sci-Fi and Fantasy,
Collections: 45 Novels With A Gothic Influence,

About Catriona Ward

Catriona Ward was born in Washington DC and grew up in the US, Kenya, Madagascar, Yemen and Morocco. She now lives in London where she works as a writer and researcher for Bianca Jagger's human rights foundation. Rawblood is her first novel.

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