Publication Date: 3rd October 2013
Age group: 9+
The gates to Frost Hollow Hall loomed before us. And they were very definitely shut.
In the middle of a frozen lake, a girl is skating. She’s not supposed to be here. No one is. Not since Kit Barrington drowned at Frost Hollow Hall ten years ago. But the dead don’t scare Tilly Higgins.
The ice is thin. It cracks. Suddenly she’s under the water, drowning. Near death, a strange spirit appears to her, a boy so beautiful Tilly’s sure he’s an angel. But he’s a ghost. A very troubled ghost. And he desperately needs her help.
Frost Hollow Hall is a thrilling historical fiction début. Told in Tilly’s unique voice, it is a tale of love and loss, and how forgiveness is the key to recovery.
I loved the premise of this ghostly mystery as soon as I read the summary and the actualisation of the premise to story does not disappoint.
I especially like the chapter titles, they hinted at something extraordinary without giving away too much.
We get to see the normal life of Tilly in the opening chapters, her quaint and merger existence. I loved that she didn’t want to leave the ‘angel’ in the lake. And the first words she hears upon regaining conscious are, ‘We’ll be in for it if she comes in here.’ They are obviously in Frost Hollow Hall, but who is she and why are they all so scared of her? When we find out that the servants are scared to help Tilly because of Mrs. Jesop intrigue sets in.
Carroll has captured the time frame of the book perfectly and without going too far. There is the mention of the young teens working, the odd phrase and descriptions that all cumulate into perfecting the setting.
Carroll has produced a sweet, ghostly mystery with a happy ending.
Many thanks to Faber for the review copy.