Sarah Morton hopes discovering the truth about the 1859 shipwreck of the Royal Charter will silence the demons of her past.
But, tormented by visions and threats on her life, Sarah fears the ship may claim her as its final victim.
Set along the dramatic and dangerous Anglesey coastline, The Charter is a story of greed and forgiveness - when the treasures of the past evoke the crimes of today.
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Unsettling and atmospheric
The sense of place, with such swings from calm and peaceful to hugely dramatic and all related to the sea. A voice in full control of the material with a talent for switching voice pace to match srtory pace.
The original shipwreck, the tragic correlation of greed and death, echoes through the whole book. And the opening scene is a shocker - in a good way.
The final scene is unexpected but exactly right. I had no idea how this would play out but felt fully satisfied by the conclusion.
No. I needed time to think about what I'd heard and consider the meanings. Having said that, I was always eager to get back to it.
It made me want to visit the location, see that coast and visit that church, to pay tribute to the real tragedy which sparked this story.
The past is a distant, receding coastline
This is a complex, well crafted tale of loss, greed and the inevitability of fate. The author has brought together elements of different genres (family drama, murder mystery, thriller, ghost story, treasure hunt!) and set them loose on the rugged but beautiful coastline of Anglesey. This may sound like a bit of a muddle but Gillian Hamer has done a fine job of delivering a cohesive narrative.I particularly enjoyed the descriptive passages regarding the Welsh scenery, the stormy seas and the terrible sinking of The Royal Charter which casts it's shadow through the entire story.
Catherine O'Brien has a soft, pleasant voice which suits the ghostly laments of Angelina and the narration of the tragedy well. However, she is not good at accents which can be distracting in a story such as this. I did get used to this though and found that it did not spoil my enjoyment of the last half of the book when the pace increased.
There are lots of sad or tragic events in this story, but it is compelling and I did not find it depressing to listen to.