Beneath the Shadows (Hardcover)

A Novel

By Sara Foster

Minotaur Books, 9780312643362, 320pp.

Publication Date: June 5, 2012

Other Editions of This Title:
Compact Disc (3/3/2020)
MP3 CD (3/3/2020)

List Price: 39.99*
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In this thrilling gothic suspense debut by Sara Foster in the tradition of Rosamund Lupton and Sophie Hannah, a young mother searches Yorkshire's windswept moors for the truth behind her husband's mysterious disappearance.


When Grace's husband, Adam, inherits an isolated North Yorkshire cottage, they leave the bustle of London behind to try a new life. A week later, Adam vanishes without a trace, leaving their baby daughter, Millie, in her stroller on the doorstep. The following year, Grace returns to the tiny village on the untamed heath. Everyone—the police, her parents, even her best friend and younger sister—is convinced that Adam left her. But Grace, unable to let go of her memories of their love and life together, cannot accept this explanation. She is desperate for answers, but the slumbering, deeply superstitious hamlet is unwilling to give up its secrets. As Grace hunts through forgotten corners of the cottage searching for clues, and digs deeper into the lives of the locals, strange dreams begin to haunt her. Are the villagers hiding something, or is she becoming increasingly paranoid? Only as snowfall threatens to cut her and Millie off from the rest of the world does Grace make a terrible discovery. She has been looking in the wrong place for answers all along, and she and her daughter will be in terrible danger if she cannot get them away in time.

"A haunting tale of loss and one woman's search for the truth no matter the consequences. This vividly written novel will leave you breathless and as chilled as the starkly beautiful North Yorkshire moors where this compelling story unfolds." –Heather Gudenkauf, New York Times bestselling author of These Things Hidden

About the Author

Sara Foster is the international bestselling author of Beneath the Shadows. Born and raised in the UK, she worked for a time in the HarperCollins fiction department in London, before turning her hand to freelance editing and writing in her spare time.  Sara moved to Western Australia in 2004, where she lives with her husband and young daughter. 

Praise For Beneath the Shadows: A Novel

“Australian author Sara Foster uncovers a rich vein of atmosphere in the North Yorkshire moors in her intense psychological thriller about a woman trying to rebuild her life after her husband disappears. A touch of the supernatural and family ghost tales add to the already spooky landscape that blankets Foster's debut. But Foster's dabbling in the occult doesn't detract from the realistic fears and down-to-earth problems explored in Beneath the Shadows. Foster uses the sub-genre of the quiet, non-violent English village mystery to gracefully weave in the themes of loss, grief and abandonment…. Foster skillfully uses the village's isolation and the moors where "the raw, untouched vistas had the power to stop your mind" as a metaphor for Grace's own isolation… The absorbing plot of Beneath the Shadows shows that a quiet, non-violent mystery can pack a lot of punch.” —South Florida Sun-Sentinel

“From the opening paragraphs of Australian author Sara Foster's beguiling gothic debut Beneath the Shadows, I knew I was going to enjoy it…. The story is rich with references to Daphne du Maurier's classic gothic romance "Rebecca," which made me love the book even more. Foster's captivating story is steeped in secrets locked in attics and hidden in cellars, good sisters, bad sisters, a ghost, a couple of brooding handsome men and almost as many characters with mother issues as a Sophocles play.” —Carole Barrowman, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

“Sara Foster's Beneath the Shadows is a haunting tale of loss and one woman's search for the truth no matter the consequences. This vividly written novel will leave you breathless and as chilled as the starkly beautiful North Yorkshire moors where this compelling story unfolds.” —Heather Gudenkauf, New York Times bestselling author of These Things Hidden

“Melding dark elements of Daphne du Maurier, Minette Walters and Hitchcock, Sara Foster has crafted a moody, modern Gothic for today's generation. Beneath the Shadows keeps you guessing right up until the last atmospheric page and establishes Foster as a new master of the psychological suspense genre.” —Julia Spencer-Fleming, New York Times bestselling author of One Was a Soldier

“Though the case has long grown cold, Grace pursues every lead with a fury, unwilling to relegate Adam to the past. Often near panic, she pushes on in the face of her suspicions, nightmares and strange happenings, untangling a dark web of treachery, secrets and deceit. Foster builds on Adam’s shocking disappearance to create the creepy atmosphere of unseen threat—and things that go bump in the night—a mystery set in snowbound Northern Yorkshire, where the worst thing of all is finding no answer for the loss of a loving husband.” —

“Set in England's desolate moors, this page-turner has just the right amount of mystery.” —InStyle (Australia)

“As winter snows start to cut them off from the world, Grace finds the answers lie in unsuspected places. Heart-stopping moments are ahead for her… and us.” —Women's Day (Australia)

“Loss, grief, abandonment, and search for truth are dark themes woven through [Australian] author Sara Foster's latest book, Beneath the Shadows. Combining elements of mystery, psychological thriller, romance, and ghost story, [the] novel leaves readers guessing until the very end.” —West Australian (Perth)

“Sara Foster slowly unravels the mystery in this highly engaging thriller… Secrets [Grace] uncovers in the cellar, not to mention the ghostly antics of the grandfather clock, further enhance this very readable novel's Gothic flavor.” —Canberra Times

“Sara Foster overtly appropriates the tone, atmosphere and themes of classics from Wuthering Heights to Rebecca, delivering a modern gothic that has the charm and suspense of Susan Hill's ghost stories.” —Saturday Age (Melbourne)

“If you’ve ever fantasized about leaving all the chaos of the city behind and opting for a more peaceful existence in a small town, you might think again after reading Beneath the Shadows… [The novel] is full of intrigue and wonderfully dark descriptions of ghosts that haunt the moors.  It’s a perfect choice for summer holiday reading on the beach—rather than in the dark of night!” —Good Reading Magazine

“A mystery-suspense novel so thrilling it forces you to burn the midnight oil.” —Flourish Magazine

“The opening chapter of this book doesn't just grab you. It reaches out and hooks you… Against a backdrop of lonely moors, windswept cliffs, winter snow and eerie myths, the mystery plays out. The village in which it is set is populated by characters that appear to be a mixture of The Vicar of Dibley and a gothic horror story… With spooky clocks, snowstorms, cursed chairs, family secrets, ominous portents, greasy letters written on glass, taciturn locals and a few ghosts, there's something here for everyone who enjoys a good shiver up the spine. The moors, bleak, beautiful and unforgiving, provide the perfect backdrop.” —Media Culture Reviews

“A winning evocation of novels such as Wuthering Heights, The Turn of the Screw, Jane Eyre, Great Expectations… as well as the natural sights and sounds of the Yorkshire landscape… All this is combined with the literary trope of a family with too many buried secrets to produce a work that casually merges classicism and contemporary to winning effect.” —

“An intricately woven tale inspired by classic stories such as Wuthering Heights and Rebecca. The suspense and unexpected twists will leave you guessing all the way through.” —

“I devoured this book in just a couple of hours yesterday afternoon… Beneath the Shadows draws together an intriguing mystery, an atmospheric and gloomy setting that steals over you as you read it and an interesting and varied cast of supporting characters to create a psychological thriller that will definitely leave you wanting more from this author! …I think this novel has a little something for most readers – a really well written mystery with whispers of the supernatural, a dark and gothic setting with a modern-day twist, characters that you can warm to and that make you really think – who knows more than they're letting on, who is not as friendly as they appear.” —

“I was mesmerised by Sara's writing, and completely pulled in by the story… This is a book that is once again full of secrets and mysteries, it keeps you guessing all the way through, wondering what happened, what will happen, and why is the village being so mysterious.” —