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  • Location: Derbyshire, Ashbourne



Why a Booktrail?

2000s: There’s a stranger in your house…

  • ISBN: 978-0008311285
  • Genre: Psychological

What you need to know before your trail

When her stepmother dies unexpectedly, Caro returns to her childhood home in Derbyshire. She hadn’t seen Elizabeth in years, but the remote farmhouse offers refuge from a bad relationship, and a chance to start again.

But going through Elizabeth’s belongings unearths memories Caro would rather stay buried. In particular, the story her stepmother would tell her, about two little girls and the terrible thing they do.

As heavy snow traps Caro in the village, where her neighbours stare and whisper, Caro is forced to question why Elizabeth hated her so much, and what she was hiding. But does she really want to uncover the truth?

Travel Guide

Larkstone Farm, Derbyshire

The farmhouse has been in the family for year and it’s remote and far from the road. It could be a nice place to relax and remember but it depends on the memories which have been made there and the ones still festering in the walls and the woods nearby. This is a spooky place  and the longer Caro stays here ,the more memories start to reemerge and the more frightening images and sound get inside her head. Particularly the sound of the sinister pear drum her sister Elizabeth would terrorise Caro with.

She might have lived here once but now is an outsider…..and this is not the place to be an outsider…can you hear the pear drum?

Close to the village of Ashbourne in Derbyshire and  the characters do pop in and out of the village during the story.

Compared to London, it was the middle of nowhere. |In the wilds of Derbyshire, it wasn’t a working farm, not any more; I couldn’t remember whether it still had any land.”

“There, where the rain fell straight and sharp, like needles on your back, punishing.”


The village is in the middle of nowhere reached by country lanes and twisty roads bordered by trees. The house they return to is on a hill at the end of a track and overlooking the valley.

The Pear Drum

This story is loosely based on The New Mother by  Lucy Clifford, a children’s story published in her 1882 collection, The Anyhow Stories, Moral and Otherwise. It caught the author’s attention due to the story of the pear drum which is actually a sort of mechanical violin called an organistrum or hurdy gurdy. In the painting called The Garden of Earthly Delights by Hieronymus Bosh,  you can see a depiction of such a drum. In this painting Bosh includes mischievous and devilish ‘ little people’ both tortured by and delighting in the various ‘musical instruments of hell’.

Booktrailer Review

Susan: @thebooktrailer

A psychological I’m calling this. I wouldn’t call it a thriller although it’s billed as one but that’s no bad thing. This has a black fairytale kind of vibe to it. Not so much Brothers Grimm but rather M. Night Shyamalan .

Set in Derbyshire in a remote farmhouse near Ashbourne. Locations are few and far between but the setting is one of vagueness, fear, isolation and claustrophobia and all the trappings of returning to a family home of torment.

There’s a wicked stepmother or evil Cinderella sister if you will, a remote house in the woods, evil dangers, little people and more…but in the modern day and in a novel which messes with your mind in ways you won’t expect.


BookTrail Boarding Pass: Cuckoo

Destination: Derbyshire, Ashbourne Author/guide: Sophie Draper  Departure Time: 2000s

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