Home Before Dark by Riley Sager Review

Home Before Dark Riley Sager | Dutton Books| Pub: 6/30/20


“Every house has a story to tell and a secret to share.”

For those who have followed me for a while, you know my love for Riley Sager’s books. I read a lot of thrillers, but Riley’s somehow still thrill me. Guess after guess after guess and I still couldn’t figure out who, what or why.

Home Before Dark follows Maggie as she goes back to a home she lived in for all of 20 days as a five year old. Maggie’s dad wrote a book about Baneberry Hall and about how it was haunted and how her family fled in the middle of the night. Maggie has had to deal with that book her entire life. So, Maggie ventures back there to try to learn the truth about those 20 days. She feels like the book is a total lie because there is no such thing as ghosts. Or are there?

Riley gripped me with this one. It alternates between present day Maggie and the Book her father wrote 25 years ago. It was so creepy. Every noise I heard gave me goosebumps and chills down my spine. The ending caught me off guard. And I will most definitely never sleep with a closet door open EVER AGAIN.

Home Before Dark publishes Tuesday, June 30. If I were you, I’d preorder my copy and I’d be sure to read it with the lights turned on…


Synopsis (Credit: Goodreads)


What was it like? Living in that house.

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?

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