Publisher: Flycatcher Books
Publication Date: May 8, 2013
Origins: From Author for Review
Synopsis: Vain Lily Blackwood and her shy brother Silas wonder if their family will ever settle in one place long enough to lead a normal life. When a mysterious stranger arrives claiming to be their uncle, they discover their parents have been hiding a secret that turns their world upside down.
The two are kidnapped to Nightfall Gardens, the family’s ancestral home, a place shrouded in ancient mystery, where they meet their dying grandmother and learn of an age-old curse placed on Blackwood females.
Lily must take over as protector of the house and three haunted gardens that hold mythical beasts, fairy-tale nightmares and far worse. If she doesn’t, the evil trapped there will be unleashed and bring on a new dark age.
While she deals with malevolent ghosts inside the house, Silas is put to work in the gardens, where one wrong step means death.
Along the way, they search to unlock the secrets of the house and to stop the creatures in the gardens before time runs out and the world is destroyed.
Review: NIGHTFALL GARDENS tells the story of the Blackwood family. We’re first introduced to Lily, who longs for the stage lights of Paris and London and her brother Silas, who is shy and timid. Their parents run a small traveling theater troop which has yet to turn any substantial profit. When Lily’s uncle shows up, he kidnaps Lily and Silas follows after to rescue her. What Lily and Silas don’t know is Lily is the last Blackwood female and is needed to take over for her grandmother as guardian and protector of Nightfall Gardens, as the curse demands. If Lily refuses or doesn’t show up in the once-a-year window when the gates are open before her grandmother passes, the ancient evils housed within Nightfall Gardens will be unleashed upon the world. Both Lily and Silas have new roles in this strange world and if they cannot resolve the curse, they may be stuck in Nightfall Gardens forever. NIGHTFALL GARDENS starts off slowly and ends very abruptly. I wish there had been a bit more detail about what lives in each of the gardens, but I liked the origin of the curse on the Blackwood women and the information we do learn about each garden they protect from the rest of the world. NIGHTFALL GARDENS has good writing, but I was a little discouraged at the abrupt ending.