The Thin Place by C.D. Major is published with Thomas & Mercer and has been described as ‘an unsettling story about a woman drawn to a creepy bridge in Scotland, where dogs are known to leap to their deaths, and the dark secrets she uncovers.’ Using Overtoun Estate in Dumbarton, Scotland as her inspiration, C.D. Major weaves The Thin Place around an actual freaky phenomenon that locals refer to as ‘the doggy suicides’.
Overtoun Bridge has a very strange claim to fame. Since the 1950s there have been an estimated 300 plus dogs drawn to the bridge and, for reasons unexplained, have jumped into a 50ft drop, with approximately 50 jumping to their deaths. Frightening stuff indeed. From paranormal activity to another animal’s scent, theories abound, but no one has, as of yet, uncovered the truth behind these weird and disturbing events. Overtoun House, according to local superstition, is haunted by the White Lady of Overtoun, the ghost of ex-estate owner John White’s grieving widow. It is believed that there is some connection between her ghostly presence and the dogs’ unexplained reaction to the bridge.
The story shifts between multiple timelines that are seamlessly woven throughout, with chapter titles alluding to the character being focussed on. Ava Brent is a journalist and has a reputation for her tenaciousness in both her personal and business life. When she is made aware of this famed bridge in Overtoun she decides to investigate and is immediately grabbed with a sense of something unusual, something that puts her on edge. Although her nerves are inexplicably shook Ava experiences a compulsion to return and to unearth the truth behind this eerie place. Ava lives with her husband, Fraser and their marriage has been loving and happy. When Ava discovers she is pregnant they are overjoyed and Fraser becomes really excited about the prospect of being a new Dad, throwing himself into preparing their flat and their lives for this new addition. But, Ava, although present, is not really there. Her headspace is completely absorbed with Overtoun and its history.
The Thin Place is an entertaining spooky read with a few nice twists to keep the reader intrigued. I was very keen to read more about Overtoun’s history after I turned the final page and, as an aside, C.D. Major does include some very relevant historical notes that were a great addition to further explaining her inspiration for the book. The Thin Place is definitely a book that would transfer nicely to the screen as it has a very atmospheric and malevolent feel, with a few goose-bump moments. Do you believe in the Otherworld?
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