The House of Brides

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 22 Oct 2019

Member Reviews

Miranda in an effort to run from her recent troubles travels to England to connect with her mother's estranged family and troubled.  She only knows what she's read of the family in a book written by her mother but arrives to find not all is as she thought she knew.
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I absolutely loved this book.  I did not want to finish it.  I have already recommended it to three people, one has just started it.  For fans of Kate Morton, this is a must.
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Miranda had a very good job, but when some things went wrong that caught her up in a lie, she spiraled downward.  After hiding in her father’s home with his second wife and two daughters, she has finally agreed to accept a job that he insists she take.  However, at the last minute she decides to leave Australia and head to England to Barnsley House.  It is an old estate that her mother had known well and had even written a book called “The House of Brides” which is about the place.  From this, Miranda has always been fascinated with the place.

When Miranda arrives, it is immediately assumed by the odd housekeeper, Mrs. Mins, that she is the new nanny.  Max and Daphne Summer now own the place.  They have two daughters, Sophia and Agatha, and one son, Robbie.  Max is actually Miranda’s uncle.  She goes along with the nanny accumption because she had originally received a letter from Sophia, meant for Miranda’s dead mother, asking for her help.

Barnsley House has been a successful hotel with a wonderful restaurant run by Daphne, a renowned chef.  However, a recent accident injured Daphne and Agatha, leaving the child wheelchair-bound.  Since then, the hotel is not taking any guests and Daphne is not cooking as she continues to heal.

Miranda jumps right into her duties of caring for the children.  The house is large and rather spooky especially now that there are no guests.  However, she finds herself drawn into the mysteries in the house and who all the people are, some of whom are very strange.

The story continues as Miranda delves into the events that shaped the house.  The family members all have some secrets they are keeping.

OK.  This book is rather hard to follow and I just felt that while it provided the proper amount of spookiness, the story was just not that interesting.

Copy provided by NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.
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So disappointing.  I thought I was going to love this book since it has so many great themes that I enjoy:  creepy old house, creepy characters, family secrets, unreliable narrator, hidden identities, isolation, missing person, gothic vibe.  But it did not live up to its potential.  I almost didn't finish it, but since I received an e-ARC in return for a review, I felt obligated to read it and started skimming about 1/3 of the way in.   Unfortunately, ALL of the characters are unlikable, and the main character Miranda is also downright stupid.  The plot was unbelievable and just kind of fizzled out.  Since this was an ARC, I’m hoping that an editor at the publishing house will go through this with a red pen and fix it this very rough draft into something better.

Many thanks to NetGalley for an e-ARC in return for a review (and I’m sorry I couldn’t give it a better review).
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Jane Cockram’s debut was hauntingly atmospheric a perfect fall read. Her descriptive writing style will completely transport you too the creepy Barnsley House. I would not classify this as a thriller it was more of a slow burn suspenseful family drama a little reminiscent of a Kate Morton Book. The beauty of the story was not twists and turns but rather immersive incredible storytelling. Miranda’s life has hit a bit of a bump and she is looking to reinvent herself. When she receives a mysterious letter from a cousin she’s never met Miranda believes it is the perfect time to leave Australia and fly to the UK to find a piece of her pass. Miranda’s mother Tessa was a famous author who died when she was young. Tessa had fled the UK for reasons unknown to Miranda so she ensconces herself in the family as the new nanny. What follows is the unraveling of a web of family secrets and lies.

   A creepy house full of creepy characters with a creepy past. The story really drew me in these characters were so vividly drawn, so real to me. I wanted nothing to happen to these children, I wanted to know where their mother Daphne had gone? I needed to know what was up with Max and scary Mrs. Mim. What was Elizabith really up to out on that island? Miranda was a great character and I was right there with her trying to piece all of this together. The ending to this story really surprise me, however there was an abruptness to it that didn’t flow with the rest of the book. All in all this was a captivating debut and I am looking forward to what’s next from Miss Cockram.

This book in emojis: 🌫 📖 🛥 ✍🏻 🏚
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The House of Brides by Jane Cockram is a bit of psychological suspense entangled in a family drama.  The setting in this one takes place in England in an old family estate known as The Barnsley House and is atmospheric and haunting with gothic undertones.

Our main character, Miranda, is just coming into adulthood while still being treated as a child by her family and let’s face it, still making many mistakes along the way. Miranda had become a successful influencer but her fame had gone spiraling downward when she was caught in some lies on her products.

Being at a crossroads in her life Miranda had always wanted to know about her mother’s background and family so when a letter shows up years after her passing Miranda sees it as a sign to head to England for answers. When arriving however she impulsively masquerades as a nanny while she looks to uncover the secrets of her mother’s past.

The House of Brides was a solid enough debut for this author although sometimes along the way it felt as if there were a tad bit of something missing. The setting was done rather well and along with the characters it had a wonderfully creepy vibe that pulled the story along. I’m not sure if I just longed for more depth or perhaps a bit more action to it along the way but it was enough that I’m glad I gave it a go and would pick up another by Jane Cockram.

I received an advance copy from the publisher via NetGalley.
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The House of Brides is a good gothic mystery novel. It was a bit slow and lacking in spots,but overall it was still a good book.
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This debut novel is a modern take on the old-fashioned gothic novel - An old mansion on a cliff by the sea,  a sinister housekeeper, a standoffish groundskeeper, innocent children - one in a wheelchair, withdrawn father, disappearing mother, enter a long lost family member, a young women, who lies about her identity and gets hired as the nanny - family drama all around with many mysteries to solve.  The novel flows well and keeps one interested.  Mysteries are revealed.  The last chapter seemed a bit of a brisk wrap up to me but, all in all, a quick fun read.
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The House of Brides was a fun modern-day gothic novel in the tradition that I love: A young woman grows up with a mother who is estranged from her family, after her mother's death she goes to the family's creepy estate to try to meet her mother's family and figure out why she never spoke of them. 

In this case, Miranda had a career as a social media star, but her career crashed and burned when she was sued for false health claims about the diet she invented. She sees a letter from her mother's family asking for help and decides to go and visit them. She takes a job with the family as a nanny, in a case of mistaken identity and doesn't reveal that she is one of the family. Her Aunt Daphne, by marriage, disappears and there may be a ghost in the house, which adds to the gothic feel of the novel. 

I enjoyed reading this novel set on the coast in England with a creepy house and young woman who doesn't know who to trust in her quest for the truth about her aunt and her mother. The novel kept me reading, because I wanted to know, who is good and who is bad, and how will the plot be resolved. It wasn't my favorite book of the year, but it was very enjoyable. I do recommend it if you enjoy gothic novels and have been longing for a modern-day gothic novel. It is a good read for winter, or October, because it includes a ghost, Christmas, and cold seas.
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While the story does end up being enjoyable in the end, it took too long to get there in my opinion. This book was well written, though.
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I’m not sure why this book is getting such mediocre reviews. I thought it was pretty great! It kept up a creepy pace throughout that the reader is never quite sure what is happening, but not in a terrible way. It definitely kept me guessing and I found the ending satisfying. I also felt the writing was very good. Thank you to netgalley for the arc.
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For American readers...this book starts out in Australia, and the main character dreams of returning to a pivotal country house in her family's history that's located in England. Maybe it was me, but I needed a bit more context to figure that out from the first few chapters. 

This book was well written and a good family drama. I found it a bit hard to get into, but it was a fine book.
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When Miranda's life explodes and she is forced to move back home, she finds herself lost.  She tries to please her father and step mother.  She misses her mother, a world renowned author and decides to try to find out more about her past.  She poses as a nanny to live in the ancestral home, hoping to find answers.  She finds herself involved with a family - her family unbeknownst to them - who needs her more than she knows.

I liked this book just okay.  I found it a bit unrealistic but the story like was good.  For sure not one of my favorite books.
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I found echoes of an old Daphne DuMaurier novel,complete with  pounding seas, family secrets and angry dark seas. The title refers to a famous book written by a long dead ancestor of the protagonist Miranda. A novel thought provocative in its day in that it laid bare the lives of the women of The great house and all they had achieved whether by hook or crook in a time when families kept skeletons hidden and history cloaked in mystery,which brings the reason for our heroine to seek shelter in this remote family fortress. Miranda is running from scandal of her own,clutching a heirloom bestowed on her by her mother ,a talisman she constantly wears finds herself employed as a nanny for her uncles children. A fact her uncle seems too preoccupied to notice. I found the pace very slow and the unraveling of facts to get to the truth torture . If you like throwback stories in plot design your thing than this is the novel for you. I would have loved a bit more back story on Jean Laidlow the retired school marm she seemed a deeper well. Leonard his story while brief felt tacked on as a means to tie a nice bow in the end.
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The main character, Miranda, decides to travel from Australia to England in order to reconnect with distant family at their estate—The Barnsley House (this hotel made me feel like I was in the story!). While there, she goes undercover to find out more about her estranged family. After the first night at The Barnsley House, her uncle’s wife goes missing. There’s a lot of deep secrets in The Barnsley House, but is Miranda ready to uncover them?

The House of Brides is Jane Cockram’s first novel, and it’s definitely going to kickstart her career as a mystery novelist. While the story is more of a family drama than psychological thriller, I felt intrigued to keep digging into the story. The slow building suspense works in this story and really got me questioning everything. I did NOT know how this book was going to end, and that’s always a great thing for a thriller connoisseur, like myself. While the pacing of the novel allowed my imagination to run while, I was a little shocked to see the abrupt stop towards the end. Overall, a solid debut by an author we will all be talking about this fall.
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There is something about The Barnsley house and the women that reside there that is terrifying. Beneath the elegance and the glamor nothing is quite what it seems and when Tessa, our protagonist’s long dead mother, pens the infamous novel The House of Brides she unleashes something that has yet to be contained.

We follow Miranda a now disgraced influencer as she travels to Barnsley. She seeks out knowledge of her hidden away family and the secrets they all hold dear.

This was a book that I had very conflicting thoughts about.  The plot is interesting but also very confusing. Most times I had no idea what was going on and had to reread several sections to make sense of it. The writing is simple and flowy, beautiful at times but there’s way too many descriptions about the most mundane things. Interactions between the characters are off and not believable. The climax putters and isn’t in the least bit surprising at all.

I didn’t like half of the characters but I don't think we were supposed to. What is family if not a slew of people who you can barely stand.

I did enjoy reading this however and it was an interesting premise. There are these hiccups but Jane Cockram does a wonderful job of keeping you entertained and wondering exactly what is going on.  You feel for Miranda and although she did a lot of wrong even before the book starts with her blog and app mistake, you can’t help but have empathy. 

All in all my curiosity was piqued during the entire read and I felt as though I wanted more at the end. This is a good novel for an author’s debut!

Thank you to the publisher and Netgalley for this copy of my ARC. All opinions are mine.
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After terribly failing at being a social media influencer Miranda's dad finds her a steady 9-5 job.  The night before she is supposed to start she finds a letter addressed to her mom, an author of the book House of Brides (based on the Barnsley House where her mom grew up), who died which Miranda was young.  Miranda snatches the letter to find it is from the Barnsley House in England and its from her cousin who probably doesn't know she exists. Miranda decides she wants to find out why her mom left Barnsley house to never return.  She buys a ticket with her dad's credit card and when she gets there she pretends to be interviewing for the nanny job.  As Miranda searches for answers about her mother and why she left.  She meets people of her mothers past and starts to understand the horrors of the house.
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A thrilling familial drama, The House of Brides follows Miranda - a young woman trying to recover from an social media snafu and decides to infiltrate her dead mother's ancestral home. Everything seems idyllic, but deadly secrets lurk around every corner. I quite enjoyed this book and found Miranda to be pretty sympathetic. The mystery of her mother's book and the currently missing matriarch of the Summer estate kept me glued to the pages. I highly recommend this book if you like claustrophobic Gothic mysteries, with a dash of familial drama! 

A special thank you to Netgalley for providing me with a free advanced copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion.
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The House of Brides was such an eerie read that I found unputdownable!  From the beginning, Jane Cockram did a fantastic job with hooking me!  The storyline was very well paced and there were several perfectly timed twists and turns that I didn’t see coming—love that!  I was shocked that this is Jane Cockram’s debut novel because she writes like a seasoned veteran!  The House of Brides is a 4.5 star read that will keep you reading way past your bedtime!  I am excited to see what Jane Cockram comes out with next!
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A novel for those who like a Gothic feel in their family dramas.  This book is full of the dark corners and family secrets that are reminiscence of in Daphne de Maurier and Phillipa Carr, but she gave it a modern feel with the updated characters and setting.
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