The Madam of the Narrow Houses by Caitlin R. Kiernan

Image result for the mammoth book of ghost stories by women book cover

Title: The Madam of the Narrow Houses
Author: Caitlin R. Kiernan
In: The Mammoth Book of Ghost Stories by Women (Marie O’Regan)
Rating Out of 5: 4 (Really good read!)
My Bookshelves: Ghosts, Horror
Dates read: 2nd November 2020
Pace: Slow
Format: Short story
Publisher: Robinson
Year: 2012
5th sentence, 74th page: That both Mr Wells and Mrs hunt died in November has always seemed significant, and sometimes this sempstress who is not a medium imagines it a portent of some sort, conceivably that she herself will perish on a chill November day, only after the crisper delights of October have finished, and that thought bestows a certain solace.

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She lives in a narrow house, one that is filled with mystery, grief and death.


This story was one of those that is beautiful and ethereal and on my read again pile. But, unlike most stories that I find like that, I’m not entirely sure what was actually happening. I’m getting used to that with Kiernan’s stories. They all seem to be impossible to put down, but impossible to describe. I love it.

There is so much symbolism and so many hidden layers throughout this story. It furthers my desire to reread this at a future point in time. I love stories which are heavy with symbolism – they’re the type that no matter how many times you read them, you find something new to engage and captivate.

Although I can’t quite describe what went on in this story, it is one that most definitely feels hauntings. There are amazing feelings of death and hauntings throughout. And an overwhelming feeling of loneliness.

<- The Shadow in the CornerThe Lost Ghost ->

Image source: Goodreads

3 thoughts on “The Madam of the Narrow Houses by Caitlin R. Kiernan

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