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Starve Acre: 'Beautifully written and triumphantly creepy' Mail on Sunday

Andrew Michael Hurley

7 Reviews

Rated 0

Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945), Horror & ghost stories

The new novel from 'the new master of menace' (Sunday Times)

The worst thing possible has happened. Richard and Juliette Willoughby's son, Ewan, has died suddenly at the age of five. Starve Acre, their house by the moors, was to be full of life, but is now a haunted place.

Juliette, convinced Ewan still lives there in some form, seeks the help of the Beacons, a seemingly benevolent group of occultists. Richard, to try and keep the boy out of his mind, has turned his attention to the field opposite the house, where he patiently digs the barren dirt in search of a legendary oak tree.

STARVE ACRE is a devastating new novel by the author of the prize-winning bestseller THE LONEY. It is a novel about the way in which grief splits the world in two and how, in searching for hope, we can so easily unearth horror.

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Praise for Starve Acre: 'Beautifully written and triumphantly creepy' Mail on Sunday

  • Startlingly and daringly original, a story that shivers itself deeply into the consciousness - David Park, author of the 2018 Kerry Group Irish Novel of the Year Travelling in a Strange Land

  • A deeply unsettling tale, superbly told - Bookseller

  • A brilliant interweaving of psychological realism, folklore, and the haunting presence of the supernatural. I would put it in the company of some of M. R. James's fiction, Daphne du Maurier's 'Don't Look Now', Piers Haggard's The Blood on Satan's Claw, and Ira Levin's Rosemary's Baby . . . in his ability to render the liminal space between the psychological and supernatural, Hurley most closely resembles Shirley Jackson . . . Andrew Michael Hurley is writing the very best folk horror fiction out there. In that, he has no rival. Indeed, he's writing some of the best fiction period. His novels cannot be easily categorized. They are always luminous representations of human nature, in all its frailty, spliced together with the disconcerting power of the natural world and the myths and rituals by which we attempt to reconcile ourselves to that power. In the interstices of these things-human emotion, nature, ritual-Hurley offers glimpses of what we could call the supernatural - Horror Home Room

  • Sometimes somebody comes along who truly has an original voice - Hurley is one of those people . . . Starve Acre is without doubt the most complex and thought-provoking book I've read in a long time. It's a week since I finished it, and it's still plaguing my thoughts. It's not the kind of throwaway novel you take with you on holiday; this is a tale that almost seeps into your soul, leaving the mind boggled and the heart in turmoil. I can't wait for whatever Hurley does next - ON Magazine

  • Writers such as Andrew Michael Hurley are special and Starve Acre does not betray the legacy he's established with his previous two books . . . What makes Starve Acre such a superlative piece of folk horror is that Hurley is as good a nature writer as he is a horror writer and manages to give the environment a sense of identity and presence that goes well beyond merely describing a picturesque scene - Sublime Horror

  • A tour de force of physiological fantasia . . . Writing of this quality - sensuous, exact, observant - ensures that other scenes, too, pulse with vitality . . . Hurley's gothic storylines send spectres of deathliness through his fictional world. His prose brings it vividly alive - Sunday Times

  • Beautifully written and triumphantly creepy - Mail on Sunday

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Andrew Michael Hurley

Andrew Michael Hurley is based in Lancashire. His first novel, The Loney, was originally published by Tartarus Press as a 300-copy limited edition, before being republished by John Murray. It went on to sell in twenty languages, win the Costa Best First Novel Award and the Book of the Year at the British Book Industry Awards. Devil's Day, his second novel, was picked as a Book of the Year in five newspapers, and won the Encore Award.

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