The Upstairs Room

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What to expect

‘The Upstairs Room is the real thing. Frightening and clever and full of atmosphere.’ – Susan Hill, author of The Woman In Black

The Upstairs Room is a gripping and unsettling debut from Kate Murray-Browne.

Eleanor, Richard and their two young daughters recently stretched themselves to the limit to buy their dream home, a four-bedroom Victorian townhouse in East London. But the cracks are already starting to show. Eleanor is unnerved by the eerie atmosphere in the house and becomes convinced it is making her ill. Whilst Richard remains preoccupied with Zoe, their mercurial twenty-seven-year-old lodger, Eleanor becomes determined to unravel the mystery of the house’s previous owners – including Emily, whose name is written hundreds of times on the walls of the upstairs room.

Critics Review

  • A very impressive debut. The story is played out in an unsettling narrative that makes you want to read on to the end.

    Michael Frayn
  • An incredible read. Clever, chilling, I couldn’t put it down

    Joanna Cannon, author of The Trouble With Goats and Sheep
  • A gripping and impressive story of mounting terror. Spellbinding

    John Carey
  • The Upstairs Room is the real thing. Frightening and clever and full of atmosphere

    Susan Hill, author of The Woman In Black
  • A brilliantly observed and utterly unnerving ghost story of contemporary feminism and the housing crisis. Murray-Browne turns the screws so cleverly that the moment you long to break the novel’s breathless grip is also the moment you recognize that its world is actually your own.

    Anna Smaill, author of The Chimes
  • Kate Murray-Browne’s debut novel is a property horror story … compulsively readable. Murray-Browne commands a lucid and reasonable prose, just the way to conduct you unprotestingly into the midst of this deranging subject matter. She is sharply observant but never overwrites — and on the few occasions when she offers a plain simile it’s surprisingly funny as a result. Such cool writing looks easy. It’s not. Murray-Browne is an expert editor and it shows … The Upstairs Room is engrossing. A fine holiday read. Far from London.

    Evening Standard

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