The Glass Children
Publisher: Jonathan Cape
After the death of her father, Billie and her mum are moving to a new town for a fresh start. Billie is able to stay at the same school with her friends but the house Mum has chosen is making it really difficult to settle in. Oddities and strange occurrences quickly turn into sirens for danger, the house - or somebody in it - is trying to drive the new tenants out. Light bulbs swing in rooms with closed windows and fresh handprints appear in rooms that no one has entered. Who are the glass children and why won't they leave Billie in peace?
Translated from its original Swedish this neat little story favours mystery over the macabre and is filled with unexpected turns. Billie investigates the conflicting histories of her house, muddled by local gossip and while the tragedies she uncovers are sad, they don't explain the malevolence that is still lurking in her house. The resolution avoids cliché and the cast of supporting characters are refreshingly without additional drama. The story stays focussed on the matter in hand and that keeps it a taut little read, perfect for inquisitive minds who don't mind a little chill in their spine and a twist in their tale.