Ridley House by Willa Jemhart
For as long as she can remember, nineteen-year-old Kay has been unable to stay in one place for long. With no recollection of who she is or where she came from, plagued by nightmares she doesn’t remember upon waking, and the torturous feeling that her one true love was lost to her, she is unsure whether she is searching for or fleeing from something.When she accepts a summer job at the Ridley House Inn, it feels like a nice change of pace. The country setting and old-fashioned feel are comfortable, homey, and even familiar.Shortly after her arrival, she finds a wall filled with Ridley family portraits, where one picture in particular grabs her attention — a late 1930s photograph of a young woman with a face identical to her own.Between the warnings of a scary old man telling her she should not have returned, and the magnetic pull towards a familiar and handsome young man, Kay is determined to find some answers. Is Ridley House the place she has been searching for, is it the place she has been running from, or is all of the familiarity simply contrived by her desperation to finally belong somewhere?
This is the second novel I’ve read by this indie author and, I have to say, I am a fan. Ridley House is even better than Jemhart’s debut, Sketch of Secrets, so it’s clear to see that she is improving as an author. Jemhart is definitely one of the good ones! If you are the type of person that tends to shy away from self-published novels, you needn’t shy away from this one. It feels published, if that makes sense.
Ridley House is about a young girl (19 years old), who has a paranormal secret about herself. She doesn’t remember anything from the early years of her life. But, as the story progresses, memories begin to come back to her and secrets from her past are revealed. I thought the story was very good. It kept me interested the whole way through. The beginning started out a bit slow, but as I kept reading, I became captivated and wanted to know more.
The main character, Kay, was well-developed. She is old-fashioned in many ways and, therefore, doesn’t agree with a lot of modern-day practices. She is a very endearing character and I couldn’t help but feel for her on her journey to discovering her past.
Overall, I thought this was a good book and I would recommend it. Any paranormal/mystery lovers would like this one, I think. Just look at the cover — it’s eerie and mysterious, just like the story.