Review of Home Before Dark by Riley Sager (hardcover)



Home Before Dark by Riley Sager

Maggie Holt is used to such questions. Twenty-five years ago, she and her parents, Ewan and Jess, moved into Baneberry Hall, a rambling Victorian estate in the Vermont woods. They spent three weeks there before fleeing in the dead of night, an ordeal Ewan later recounted in a nonfiction book called House of Horrors. His tale of ghostly happenings and encounters with malevolent spirits became a worldwide phenomenon, rivaling The Amityville Horror in popularity—and skepticism.

Today, Maggie is a restorer of old homes and too young to remember any of the events mentioned in her father’s book. But she also doesn’t believe a word of it. Ghosts, after all, don’t exist. When Maggie inherits Baneberry Hall after her father’s death, she returns to renovate the place to prepare it for sale. But her homecoming is anything but warm. People from the past, chronicled in House of Horrors, lurk in the shadows. And locals aren’t thrilled that their small town has been made infamous thanks to Maggie’s father. Even more unnerving is Baneberry Hall itself—a place filled with relics from another era that hint at a history of dark deeds. As Maggie experiences strange occurrences straight out of her father’s book, she starts to believe that what he wrote was more fact than fiction.

In the latest thriller from New York Times bestseller Riley Sager, a woman returns to the house made famous by her father’s bestselling horror memoir. Is the place really haunted by evil forces, as her father claimed? Or are there more earthbound—and dangerous—secrets hidden within its walls?




Riley Sager is officially an auto buy author for me now. This was so different than the other two books I’ve read and I loved every minute of it. I read this over two days and probably would have read it in a day if I had the time. It’s a perfect October read and hard to put down.

Home Before Dark goes back and forth in time. The current time is with Maggie Holt. She’s dealing with the loss of her father and finds out that he never sold their old house. The older parts are chapters from her father’s book that he wrote twenty five years earlier. Baneberry Hall was this huge old house with a pretty violent past. Maggie and her parents didn’t last there for long. Maggie is sure that nothing in the Book actually happened and she doesn’t believe in ghosts. Even though her parents told her to never go back, Maggie can’t help herself. She goes with the intention of fixing it up to sell, but really, she wants to know what really happened there.

Baneberry Hall was haunted. This is according to the Book. Maggie’s father explains each day they spent there with the growing activity. It affected Maggie most of all. She was terrified and talked to multiple ghosts there. Mainly Miss Pennyface and Mister Shadow. Mister Shadow comes out of her armoire and tells her that she’s going to die in that house. Maggie’s dad starts researching the house after he starts hearing more and more things. The house has a history of young girls dying there. The Book has always defined Maggie to others. She was an outcast and others just wanted to be around someone with a haunting in her past. For Maggie, the house represents more than just a few weeks of her childhood. While staying there, Maggie starts hearing some of the same things as her dad. She digs in deeper and finds out secrets from her past.

I loved both Maggie’s point of view and the chapters from the book. It kept me guessing and creeped me out at times.

I gave this book 5 stars.



Have you read this yet?  Is it on your TBR?  Have you read any other Riley Sager books?




Author: confessionsofayareader

I'm Kristi. I'm a wife, mom, and grandma. I have been breeding leopard geckos for ten years. I love to read and have been trying to review more books (the reason for this blog besides wanting to talk about books with everyone). I also love music and going to concerts, mostly punk and pop punk.

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