Eight authors were given after-hours freedom at their chosen English heritage site. Immersed in the history, atmosphere and rumours of hauntings, they channelled their darker imaginings into a series of new ghost stories.

I was so excited when I heard about this collection. You have to admit it’s a fantastic idea; eight authors, eight haunted locations, and eight ghost stories based on places the reader is able to visit in real life. I was expecting a lot from a group of stories by writers including The Essex Serpent author Sarah Perry, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time author Mark Haddon, and The Loney author Andrew Michael Hurley. Thankfully, I was not disappointed.

There’s a chance that any collection of short stories based on a common theme will be repetitive. But these delightfully creepy ghost stories are varied enough to make sure the reader never gets complacent, and can never guess what is going to happen next. From Sarah Perry’s tale of possession at a Jacobean country house, to Mark Haddon’s story set in a Cold War bunker, each story is as unique as the writer who created it, and every reader is sure to find something to enjoy here.

I also thoroughly enjoyed the section in the afterword – A Gazetteer of English Heritage Hauntings – in which we explore some of the most haunted buildings looked after by English Heritage, including the ones chosen by the writers. The only change I would have liked to see would be to have the notes about the authors’ chosen settings immediately after each story, to add a little more context.

Sarah Perry’s story set at Audley End, They Flee From Me That Sometime Did Me Seek, and Mark Haddon’s The Bunker were my favourite stories from this collection. They build a sense of dread so powerful that I almost didn’t want to keep reading.

The collection also includes Kate Clanchy’s heart-breaking tale set at Housesteads Roman Fort on Hadrian’s Wall, and Kamila Shamsie’s chilling story about a night security guard at Kenilworth Castle.

These brilliantly written and fantastically creepy tales are a must for ghost story fans. Guaranteed to send a chill down your spine.

Many thanks to September Publishing for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.