I’m so excited to review Gothic Revival today. Thanks to the author for gifting me a copy in exchange for my honest opinion.
Chris, Anne, Fiona, and Lauren were inseparable friends while earning MFAs in Creative Writing. Years later they’ve grown apart and are surprised to receive an invitation to a reunion from the fifth member of their group, Eric, a successful screenwriter. Eric flies them to a remote lake villa where he reveals his new obsession: their group is a modern version of the famous one from Villa Diodati in 1816, the iconic literary event during which Frankenstein was created. Chris and Anne are their Percy and Mary Shelley.
The free-spirited artist Fiona is like Claire Clairmont. Instead of Dr. Polidori, they have Lauren, PhD in Victorian History. That leaves Eric, the Hollywood player, as Lord Byron. Like Byron, Eric proposes they write ghost stories, an homage to their famous predecessors. Laughter, creativity, and reminiscence are soon replaced with deceit, suspicion, and fear. What is the self-proclaimed clairvoyant Fiona seeing and hearing? Why does Eric lie? What does the creepy old housekeeper know about their host? Tensions grow as relationships are tested until a shocking discovery reveals the true intention for the reunion.
My Thoughts on Gothic Revival
Gothic Revival was absolutely perfect for the reading mood that I’m in right now. It was dark, twisty, and fast-paced. The characters were well-defined and had their own unique voice. And I really enjoyed how their plotlines come together to form one cohesive story.
However, even though the characters were developed well, they weren’t likable. I think that was the author’s intention, but I was worried that it would make me dislike the story as a whole. I’m a character driven reader. But somehow, the author made me pull for the characters despite their personalities.
Overall, Gothic Revival was a solid story for readers who love the craft of writing and thriller lovers alike. Plus, I love the fact that this was inspired by the creation of Frankenstein. That was such a fun touch. And now I need to go reread Frankenstein.