Our Beautiful Child

  • Our Beautiful Child Cover ArtAuthor: Annalisa Crawford
  • Published: June 2014 by Battered Suitcase Press 
  • Category: Paranormal, Contemporary Fiction
  • four-half-stars

“The Boathouse collects misfits. Strange solitary creatures that yearn for contact with the outside world, but not too much. They sit, glass in hand, either staring at the table in front of them, or at some distant point on the horizon.” 
… so says the narrator of Our Beautiful Child. And he’s been around long enough to know. 

People end up in this town almost by accident. Ella is running away from her nightmares, Sally is running away from the memories of previous boyfriends and Rona is running away from university. Each of them seek sanctuary in the 18th century pub, The Boathouse; but in fact, that’s where their troubles begin. 

Ella finds love, a moment too late; Rona discovers a beautiful ability which needs refining before she gets hurt; and Sally meets the captivating Murray, who threatens to ruin everything. 

Three women. Three stories. One pub.

I was given a copy in return for an honest review.

A collection of three fairly short character driven stories, supernatural and eerie, that centre around three women, a particular place and a pub named The Boathouse.

Ella: ‘It was a dream that woke me. The dream. The one I’ve had so often. Only this time there was an ending…oh, definitely there was an ending.’

Can dreams foretell the future and if so, is it possible to change the course of events.

Sally: ‘Murder. I shudder, feeling nauseous. That word…murder. It’s so menacing, so malicious. It’s so final.’

Sally is running from her dark past but how far will she go to keep it hidden.

Rona: ‘As the sun sets, Rona sways between the tables, lighting candles. Shadows hover on the walls, looming over the room – a slight menace, a slight disquiet prevails. In the furthest corner, away from the bar and the entrance, a candle refuses to be lit.’

Rona has a gift, a gift she will have to master.. or pay the ultimate price.

These women are inextricably linked, all running away from events in their lives and ending up in the same place. Each story is detailed wonderfully and evocatively written, painting vivid pictures, chilling and macabre and all with unexpected endings. These are not feel good tales but compelling nonetheless. What brings each woman to this place and why? Is the Boathouse the catalyst? Each tale is unique yet part of the whole and all are woven together very cleverly in the final story.

About the author

ce41d-headshotI live in Cornwall UK, with a good supply of beaches and moorland right on my doorstep to keep me
inspired. I live with my husband, two sons, a dog and a cat.

Despite my location, I neither surf nor sail, and have never had any inclination to try. I much prefer walking along a deserted beach and listening to the waves crashing over rocks. For this reason, I really love the beach in the winter!

3 thoughts on “Our Beautiful Child

  1. This is a truly compelling review. I’m not generally a horror fan, but hopefully this is more just supernatural? Either way, I might not be able to resist. (Rosie, if I can’t sleep after I read this, I’m calling you…)


    1. Thanks, Barb. I’m not generally a fan of horror either. I’m not sure I’d class this as horror and there is more to it than supernatural. I really enjoyed them. Annalisa is a very clever writer.


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