It’s always hard to write a review for a book you didn’t care for when it’s gotten rave reviews from pretty much everyone else. But that’s the great thing about books. There’s something for everyone, and if you don’t like it, you can always read something else. If you like unreliable narrators and murky endings, The Little Stranger will appeal.
Dr. Faraday, a country doctor who has pulled himself up by his bootstraps, is called out to Hundreds Hall where his mother had once worked as a maid and where she had met his father. Faraday becomes fascinated with the Hall and insinuates himself into the lives of the Ayres family. The once grand, but now crumbling old mansion is the only indication of lost wealth (besides fading reputation) and the family is hanging onto it by a thread.
As Faraday becomes involved with the Ayres’, strange and inexplicable things begin to happen at Hundreds. While Faraday discounts the happenings as fancy, Mrs. Ayers, her son Roderick, and her daughter Caroline, as well as the Ayres’ maid all come to believe that there is “something” in the house.
Dr. Faraday is an intensely unlikable man. While there are plenty of likable characters, none do anything to improve their situation and rely on Dr. Faraday. The biggest disappointment, however, is that the ghost just isn’t scary.