The Story Keeper by Anna Mazzola at first glance might appear niche in terms of its subject matter, which concerns folklore and fairy tales from the Isle of Skye crofting community. However, there is far more to this story than initially meets the eye so stop and take a look, don’t pass it by!
Story keeping enthusiast Audrey Hart has a keen, inherited interest in Skye folklore and is employed by the reclusive Miss Buchanan to document the folk tales from the somewhat evasive and tight-lipped locals readying them for publishing.
During her time at Lanerly, Audrey discovers the body of a girl washed ashore. Local girls are disappearing. The crofting community is cautious and untrusting. Is this the magic of the stories at work or something more present and sinister?
Woven into the folklore are stories of missing girls and the history of how Audrey’s mother came to be on the Isle of Skye and how she met her sad demise.
The Story Keeper is a period novel, dating back to the 1850s. The writing is incredibly descriptive. It’s dark, brooding and atmospheric which enhances the mood of the story hugely. I wasn’t expecting twisty so I was surprised that towards the end the plot had me gripped and turning the pages ever quicker.
This one is not my usual read by any means and I wouldn’t necessarily have chosen it whilst bookshop browsing but I do feel I’d have missed out if I’d passed it by. I really enjoyed it. It’s well written and unusual and perfect if you’re looking for something a little different.
So it’s four slightly eerie, dark and moody stars from me. Thank you Headline and NetGalley for the opportunity to read this novel prior to publishing (July 2018) I’m sure it will be a big hit.