The Seventh Life of Aline Lloyd
Author: Robert Davies
Publication Date: 11th July 2019
Publisher: BHC Press
When Evan Morgan’s brother Damon dies suddenly, Evan is stunned to learn his inheritance, including property, has made him instantly wealthy. Traveling to North Wales seems to be a formality: pick up the valuables, sell the house quickly, and leave.
But everything changes when he arrives in Denbighshire and meets his neighbor, the alluring and mysterious Aline Lloyd. Evan feels an instant, powerful connection to not only her, but his new home in an ancient place.
As the details of Damon’s death become more bizarre, Evan is drawn deeper into the growing mystery surrounding Aline. Consumed by his feelings for her, Evan is determined to learn her secret.
Some things are better left unlearned.
Something is coming to their quiet valley. And it’s looking for Aline.
I received a free copy of this book courtesy of the publisher in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts are my own.
The seventh Life of Aline Lloyd is a standalone novel from Robert Davies, who has penned several award-winning fantasy and Sci-Fi books. It takes place in the present day, but several different centuries span the entirety of the book.
Evan (our main character) has been contacted by his sister because their brother, Damon has died unexpectedly. He dies from natural causes, but his age makes you question the circumstances around his death. Damon’s solicitor is in contact with the sister and it is arranged that they both will attend the Will and Testament reading. During the reading they discover that Evan leaves an unexpected amount of wealth to Evan and his sister, one of which is an estate in North Wales to Evan. This is where the tale takes a twisted turn.
I was pleased to discover that the author included a map of the area at the beginning of the book. Personally, it is an absolute must in any fantasy tale to have a map in which to imagine the area the story is based upon. There were several Welsh place names included in the story and it helped greatly to picture where in the country they were as, well, I’m not native to Wales.
Anyway, back on course. The estate agent Evan deals with in Wales warns him about his neighbour, Aline. He must stay away, she apparently likes to keep herself to herself. He is informed about apparent troubles during her time in Scotland. She had an emotional breakdown and was committed to a mental institution until she was deemed fit enough for discharge.
Taking on board the estate agent’s advice he leaves his neighbour well along, but he meets her in the adjoining field. For all intents and purposes the estate agent seems wrong about her but she seems mysterious and seems to know a lot more than she’s letting on. “I am History.” She also seems to know Evan’s decisions before he is aware he has made them. Odd.
Aline is forced into admitting some things to Evan after a detective turns up in Wales from Belgium asking some very confusing questions. Evan understandably has questions of his own. Aline has done things that science can’t explain. Can she shed any light on the accusations? What does the future hold for Aline and Evan now that he knows some very uncomfortable secrets.
The world building was decent enough and was fit for purpose, but I would have liked the author to give us more in the way of history of Aline. I felt for such an apparently powerful character such as Aline we needed more strength portrayed in her character arc. I felt at different points she came across as quite wooden. Aspects of the story also seemed to be skimmed over but at the same time there just wasn’t enough action in the book. It was slow and just didn’t feel connected in the story.
Although it was an OK read it wasn’t a book I felt connected to and there wasn’t really a point where I thought “yes I need to keep reading”. I’ve actually struggled to rate this book, but I am going to stick with three stars. Although I didn’t dislike it, it really was just OK. I really enjoy the Fantasy Genre, but this just failed to hit the mark for me.