House of Roots and Ruin by Erin A. Craig
In a manor by the sea, one sister is still cursed.
Despite dreams of adventures far beyond the Salann shores, seventeen-year-old Verity Thaumas has remained at her family’s estate, Highmoor, with her older sister Camille, while their sisters have scattered across Arcannia.
When their sister Mercy sends word that the Duchess of Bloem—wife of a celebrated botanist—is interested in having Verity paint a portrait of her son, Alexander, Verity jumps at the chance, but Camille won’t allow it. Forced to reveal the secret she’s kept for years, Camille tells Verity the truth one day: Verity is still seeing ghosts, she just doesn’t know it.
Stunned, Verity flees Highmoor that night and—with nowhere else to turn—makes her way to Bloem. At first, she is captivated by the lush, luxurious landscape and is quickly drawn to charming, witty, and impossibly handsome Alexander Laurent. And soon, to her surprise, a romance . . . blossoms.
But it’s not long before Verity is plagued with nightmares, and the darker side of Bloem begins to show through its sickly-sweet façade. . . .
I absolutely loved House of Salt and Sorrows, so it was a no-brainer to pick up House of Roots and Ruin, devour it, and love it.
My first impression of this book was, "oh, she's thick!" It made me nervous at how big it was because I knew things were about to go down. And go down they did. Thankfully this story had moments related to the first book, and the critical moments of HOSAS are brought up, so you don't have to worry about remembering every little detail, which was nice because it had been a couple of years since I read HOSAS. This story follows Verity, who is now grown up, and boy, did I feel so sorry for her at the beginning. Living under the care of her sister Camille, she has a chance to go and see another part of the world after being confined to Highmoor. Camille is reluctant to let her do anything, so Verity finally escapes to live for herself. Immediately you are drawn to the charms of Alex and the flowery beauty of Bloem until things start going bump in the night. There is so much that happens that just blew my mind. Every revelation had me on the edge of my seat.
When I tell you that Erin A. Craig is a mastermind, believe me! The ending of this book had me floored! It took me at least 15 minutes before I could the epilogue. That ending still haunts me so much that I need Erin to give us another story following that ending so I can know what happens next.
I really enjoyed House of Salt and Sorrows, so of course I had to jump on the chance to read House of Roots and Ruin early.
It did not disappoint. I love the way Craig writes a lush and vibrant, yet gothic, world. It’s hard to describe honestly, but I loved every detail. Every crumb of secrets I could latch on to. I had wild theories and voiced recollections. (Thank the book Gods my BFF is also reading it.)
The story was so different from Salt and Sorrow, but similar. It felt like home in a way. I loved every twist and encounter. This world Craig created is one I’d happily revisit over and over.
New York Times bestselling author Erin A. Craig has always loved telling stories.
After getting her B.F.A. from the University of Michigan, in Theatre Design and Production, she stage managed tragic operas with hunchbacks, séances, and murderous clowns, then decided she wanted to write books that were just as spooky.
An avid reader, decent quilter, rabid basketball fan, and collector of typewriters, brass figurines, and sparkly shoes, Erin makes her home in West Michigan with her husband and daughter.
She is represented by Sarah Landis at Sterling Lord Literistic.