Release Date: 9th December 2021
Find it on: Goodreads. BookDepository. Waterstones.
Source: The publisher kindly sent me a copy of this book to review
Rating: 4.5/5 stars
The North Atlantic, 14 April 1912. Amid the chaos of the sinking Titanic, a young Eleanor Annenberg meets the eyes of a stranger and is immediately captivated. As the ship buckles around them, she follows him down into the hold and finds him leaning over an open sarcophagus, surrounded by mutilated bodies. She catches but a glimpse of what lies within before she’s sucked into a maelstrom of freezing brine and half-devoured corpses.
Elle is pulled out of the water, but the stranger – and the secrets she stumbled upon – are lost. Unintentionally, however, he leaves her a gift; one so compelling that Elle embarks on a journey that pulls her into a world of ancient evils, vicious hunters and human prey to find the man who saved her that fateful night.
From trench warfare at Cape Helles in 1915 to a shipwreck in the tropical shallows off the Honduran coast, from a lost mine beneath the towering Externsteine in a Germany on the verge of war to the gothic crypts of Highgate Cemetery in London, Elle gets closer to a truth she has sought for most of her life. But at what cost? Gifts, after all, are seldom free.
The Gift is a dark and intriguing tale that follows Eleanor Annenberg. Traveling with her parents back to America onboard the Titanic, Eleanor is captivated by a mysterious stranger. She follows him to the very depths of the ship where he opens an ancient sarcophagus. There are corpses everywhere and Eleanor only catches a glimpse of what lies inside before she is swept away in the vicious waters. When she awakes she has been pulled from the water and has a chance to survive that fateful night. The events on the Titanic leave Eleanor with so many questions and she embarks on a journey to uncover the truth – who was the man who saved her and what evil thing killed and mutilated the people on the ship that night? The journey will take her from the tropical shallows off Honduras to a lost mine in Germany. Will she be able to uncover the truth and will it be worth the cost?
The Gift is a brilliantly addictive adventure story, one that pulls the reader in from the very beginning. The book was excellently plotted and I loved the slow unraveling of the mystery. Williams has a gorgeous writing style and the different locations really came to life. The writing was very compelling and I found myself getting sucked deeper and deeper into this gothic tale. The story gave me Dracula vibes and it was the perfect book to get lost in on a dark and stormy evening.
The Gift easily hooks you in with its first chapter set on board the Titanic. It was a clever and compelling tale and I felt like I was right alongside Eleanor, desperate to know more about Balthazar. Eleanor was a really fascinating main character, she’s incredibly sharp and clever and I liked her immediately. She’s determined to uncover the truth, even if that puts her in danger. The Gift is a dark and addictive gothic adventure and a book I could not put down. The Gift is a brilliant start to the series and I cannot wait to see where things go in book two.