The House at the End of Lacelean Street, by Catherine McCarthy

The Book

The House at the End of Lacelean Street
Pages: 152
Age Group: Adult
Published on 4/16/2024
Publisher: Dark Matter INK
Gothic Horror
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It's midnight and in the midst of an ice storm when Claudia Dance boards the bright yellow bus to Lacelean Street, a destination she has never heard of. She has no coat, no luggage, and no clue as to why she left home. In fact, she has no memory of her past whatsoever, and yet she feels compelled to make the trip. She will come to realize that salvation lies within the red-brick house at the end of Lacelean Street, a salvation granted by the strange power that dwells within. Sanity will be questioned, limits tested, and answers revealed... But at what price?

My Review

The House at the End of Lacelean Street is a gothic horror novella written by Catherine McCarthy, and published by Dark Matter INK. Three strangers are brought by the same bus to the same destination, a red brick house, where a key and instructions await each one, which will take them into the path of healing their own problems, but without specifying the how, especially as the three characters are missing their memories.

The three characters hold their own secrets, from Stacey, the young drug-addicted woman, to Howard, an older man, and Grace, a middle age woman; all of them should get a lesson from this house that will help them to fight their own ghosts, at the cost of the pain that is implied in the process.
Told using the characters' own POV, we get an intense story that is moved forward with the encounters between characters, and the meetings at the library become the angular piece that weaves together the narrative. Lessons are taught, and paid with the sanity of the recipients.

McCarthy's prose is sharp and precise, giving each character a distinguishable voice that foreshadows the reader what is to come in the future; a haunted atmosphere that only heightens the incredible growth the characters experience as long as they accept their own terrible truth.

The House at the End of Lacelean Street is an excellent gothic horror novella, a really impactful story, proving McCarthy's ability to write complex characters; unveiling the mystery is part of the experience, so I totally recommend going blind into the story.

The Author/s

Catherine McCarthy

Catherine McCarthy

Catherine McCarthy weaves dark tales on an ancient loom from her farmhouse in West Wales.

She is the author of the novellas Immortelle and Mosaic and the novel A Moonlit Path of Madness. Her short fiction has been published in various anthologies and magazines, including those by Black Spot Books, Brigids Gate Press, and Dark Matter Ink.In 2020 she won the Aberystwyth University Prize for her short fiction.

Time away from the loom is spent hiking the Welsh coast path or huddled in an ancient graveyard reading Dylan Thomas or Poe.