Friday 7 January 2022

πŸ“– Book Review ~ Mirrorland by Carole Johnstone

Harper Collins
The Borough Press

Out in paperback 6th January

  My thanks to the publishers for the invitation to read this book

One twin ran. The other vanished. Neither escaped…


Cat’s twin sister El has disappeared. But there’s one thing Cat is sure of: her sister isn’t dead. She would have felt it. She would have known.


To find her sister, Cat must return to their dark, crumbling childhood home and confront the horrors that wait there. Because it’s all coming back to Cat now: all the things she has buried, all the secrets she’s been running from.


The closer Cat comes to the truth, the closer to danger she is. Some things are better left in the past…

πŸ“– My review ..

As debut novels go this one is pretty much up there with the best. Previously published in hardcover in 2021, this week sees the paperback release of Mirrorland and if you enjoy twisty, psychological suspense stories then this one certainly ticks all the boxes. Any book that Stephen King endorses with 'dark and devious' is, in my opinion, well worth a read.

Identical twins El and Cal spent their childhood in the claustrophobic atmosphere of 36 Westeryk Road in Edinburgh and only they knew just what nightmares followed them around as they played their complex game of pirate ships in Mirrorland, the place they could escape to when the reality of their life in this gloomy gothic mansion became too much to bear. We meet again with Cal when, as an adult, she returns to Edinburgh, from America, barely coping with the devastating news that El, now living with her husband at Westeryk Road, is missing ...

What then follows is a dark and addictive story of a childhood spent in the shadows of an unnamed terror and of the effects which linger long into the twin's adult lives. The story moves along at a cracking pace and whilst there were times when I had to suspend belief, the over-riding joy of immersive fiction is that it takes you to places that you could never imagine in your wildest dreams and that's exactly what Mirrorland offers on its roller coaster of a ride. I was fully invested in the story from the start especially as we follow Cal as she attempts to put together the jagged pieces of her fractured childhood whilst at the same time doing all she can to find out why El has disappeared so mysteriously.

Mirrorland is fast, furious, deliciously dark and definitely devious. I loved it.

Best Read with...copious glasses of wine and a comforting blanket.

Carole Johnstone’s award-winning short fiction has been reprinted in many annual ‘Best of’ anthologies in the UK and US. She lives in Argyll & Bute, Scotland, with her husband. Mirrorland is her debut novel.

Twitter @C_L_Johnstone #Mirrorland



  1. Thank you so much again, Jo! This review is so interesting, and obv I'm really glad that you enjoyed Mirrorland! Thank you so much for taking the time to read and review it, I'm very grateful.
    All best wishes,
    Carole xx

    1. Carole, thank you so much for a great story. I really loved it and look forward to seeing what you do next! Happy writing xx


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