This was recommended when I was watching some training videos. I read this with Poppy at home and we both had to keep reading until the end. I think that boys and girls will both enjoy this equally.
The story is focused on a girl called Mariel, who lives in Australia, she and her mum come back for a family funeral and she discovers that she has a large family that she knew nothing about. Her cousins might not give her the warm welcome that you would expect and Mariel soon discovers that the family has a strange curse on it, that the adults seem to know nothing about. Mariel has to wrestle with her feelings of resentment towards her mother who lied to her about not having any family and wonder why she did it. Her cousins make it clear that she does not belong in England and that her Grandma whose funeral it is, did not care about her. What will Mariel do?
The curse may have something to do with the local stories about the beast of Wilderdale. Mariel seems drawn to the local vicar who may be able to cast some light on her family’s strange affliction. Will you guess what the curse is on the Considine family before it is revealed? I did.
This is a very dark but humorous tale and might be a little scary for younger children.