Saturday 12 September 2015

Out of the Darkness by Katy Hogan

Out of the Darkness is a haunting, sometimes heart-breaking, contemporary novel with a supernatural twist. 
A tale of friendship and redemption, of love and loss, and life after death. 
Set in the lively coastal town of Brighton, Out of the Darkness tells the moving story of three women, complete strangers, each burdened by their own secrets, fears and emotional baggage 
Their lives are changed irrevocably when they are brought together by one remarkable connection: someone who wants to help them.....from beyond the grave.

Out of the Darkness by Katy Hogan was published in paperback on 6 July 2015.

The word 'supernatural' often strikes fear into my heart and I do my best to avoid books that claim to have a 'supernatural twist'. However, bloggers that I respect have raved about this book, and although I stopped myself from actually reading the reviews, my interest was sparked enough for me to cast aside my preconceptions and take the plunge.

It is a plunge!  I dived in whilst sitting on a train on my way to London, and barely raised my eyes from the pages for the whole journey. I finished the book just as I was pulling into my home station on my return journey, and I am so pleased that I stepped out of my comfort zone and read this emotional and really lovely story.

Based around three female characters; Jessica, Alex and Hannah, it's a story that captures a wealth of feelings experienced through some emotionally-charged themes. Jessica is grieving for her mother who died recently, taken so early and leaving an enormous hole in her world. She also has to face up to another potentially life-changing situation, and when Alex and Hannah rush to help her one day, their friendship begins.

These three woman each have their own sadness. There was a time that I thought that Jessica was going to be saved from herself, when she met Finn at the beginning of the book, and although he brought a flash of joy and laughter into her world, he doesn't stay around for long.

Katy Hogan gently and carefully reveals the inner turmoil in each of her characters, and whilst the reader will at first wonder what on earth they have in common, it soon becomes clear that they all have many things to link them together.

All of us will experience death, we will grieve and we will hurt. Katy Hogan explores ways of dealing with this issue that may not sit comfortably with some readers, but is done so tenderly and with such emotive writing that it would be very hard to criticise or dismiss. Out of the Darkness is a book that will touch most readers, will raise questions and may comfort. The writing is elegant, the pace is gentle and the characters are authentic.

Out of the Darkness is a fine debut from an author to watch.

My thanks to the author who sent my copy for review.

About Katy Hogan:
Having grown up with a mother who consulted her tarot cards on a weekly basis, and who would frequently hear voices or sense an other-worldly presence, it has always been perfectly natural for me to assume that there is more to this life than meets the eye. 

I have even experienced a few mysterious encounters myself. But it was only when I suffered the loss of a loved one that I started to question the possibility of life after death, and I decided to find out more. 

And so began a fascinating journey into the world of the supernatural, where I met 'ordinary' people who claimed to have experienced the extraordinary. 

This is where I found the inspiration for my debut novel, Out of the Darkness
Although it’s fiction, much of the phenomena written about in the story have been experienced by me, my friends, or people I spoke to during my research. 

I have started work on my second novel, but when I am not writing, you will find me keeping tabs on my teenage children, or walking my dogs in the Hertfordshire countryside.

For more information, check out Katy Hogan's website
Find the novel on Facebook 
Follow her on Twitter @KatyHogan


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