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Summary

They said the dead can't hurt you.... They were wrong.

The House on Cold Hill is a chilling and suspenseful ghost story from the multimillion-copy best-selling author of Dead Simple, Peter James.

Moving from the heart of Brighton and Hove to the Sussex countryside is a big undertaking for Ollie and Caro Harcourt and their 12-year-old daughter, Jade. But when they view Cold Hill House - a huge, dilapidated Georgian mansion - Ollie is filled with excitement. Despite the financial strain of the move, he has dreamed of living in the country since he was a child, and he sees Cold Hill House as a paradise for his animal-loving daughter, the perfect base for his web-design business and a terrific long-term investment. Caro is less certain, and Jade is grumpy about being separated from her friends.

Within days of moving in, it becomes apparent that the Harcourt family aren't the only residents of the house. A friend of Jade's is the first to see the spectral woman, standing behind her as the girls talk on FaceTime. Then there are more sightings as well as increasingly disturbing occurrences in the house. As the haunting becomes more malevolent and the house itself begins to turn on the Harcourts, the terrified family discover Cold Hill House's dark history and the horrible truth of what it could mean for them....

©2015 Peter James (P)2015 Pan Macmillan Publishers Ltd.

Critic reviews

"Impeccable…." ( The Sunday Times)
"Superbly creepy modern horror story." "Book of the Week" ( The Sunday Mirror)
"James is a compelling storyteller and he ratchets up the tension in increments, so that his readers will be suitably terrified. By the time you want to scream ‘Look behind you!’, it’s already too late.” ‘Halloween Chillers." ( The Daily Mail)
"A chilling read…this novel is almost impossible to put down." (Charlotte Heathcote, The Daily Express)

What members say

Average customer ratings

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  • 4 out of 5 stars
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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Great story

What did you like most about The House on Cold Hill?

I have always enjoyed Peter James books. This is a very different from the thrillers I am used to by him. A ghost story is something I did not expect from Peter James but, it was very good and the end was better than I expected. Worth a listen

What about Nicholas Boulton’s performance did you like?

Great to listen to and adds vision to the story

10 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Ghosts can send text messages in this book

I'm a huge fan of Peter James - especially his early horror books - but unfortunately this one didn't hit the mark for me. There are far too many haunted house cliches (i.e. refusing to leave even in the face of clear malevolence), with the unwelcome addition of a ghost that can hack into mobile phones and computers! The "twist" at the end was rather predictable/derivative too.

On the plus side, the audio book narrator was excellent, and I suppose I could say that it is definitely one of the best "text messaging ghost" stories I have ever read.

16 of 17 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

What a treat !

It being Xmas and all it's a great time to listen to ghost stories. This definitely does not disappoint. The line of the story is not new but catches you up in it and before you know it you really, really, really want to know how it's going to end ... Took an amazing amount of willpower not to cheat and find out before the end! Enjoy!

12 of 13 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Really creepy

Fantastic book. Downloaded this on the off chance and not been able to stop listening. Didn't think I could be scared driving down the A6 on my morning commute but I've been proven wrong.

9 of 10 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Margaret
  • Hinckley, United Kingdom
  • 22-11-15

Excellent Book

I am a big fan of Peter James and I really enjoyed this book. It is a haunted house story with a difference. Loved the narration, and the story moved on at a fast and scary pace, I really felt for the characters. Thoroughly recommended

9 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

The best book I think I've ever come across!

I loved Peter James early supernatural books and was so pleased he decided to write this one. The plot is very full, detailed and well paced. I would have loved to have been able to listen to it in one sitting, it was such a gripping story. Great for lovers of haunted houses. I will certainly listen to this again. Nicholas Boulton did an amazing job in the narration. His characterisation of the voices was impeccable and constant throughout. You always knew which character you were listening too. The ending was good too, it didn't just fade away. Absolutely brilliant!!!
I really hope he writes another ghost story soon. I love his imaginative mind.

8 of 9 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

good book and narrative ☺

looked forward to bedtime to listen. to this book loved it 😄 didn't want it to end

8 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Disapointed 😕

It had all the makings of a great haunted house ghost story but for me it never really delivered. Instead of feeling sorry for the family I was willing the ghost to get them just to stop them whining.

21 of 26 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
  • Louise
  • United Kingdom
  • 28-12-15

Terrible and amateurish

Love Peter James normally but when he moves away from detective stories his writing style is indistinguishable. It was a child like ghost story and I'm sorry I wasted a precious credit on it.

10 of 13 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Dreadful book

The best thing that can be said about this childishly written so called ghost story is that it was very well performed by Nicholas Boulton.
Love the Roy Grace series but I would seriously give this book a miss.Tedious plot with sterotypical wooden characters and a very poor ending.

12 of 16 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Anne
  • 28-02-17

Not up to par

I am a huge fan of the Roy grace series. This book,however, dragged on and on. I listened to it. I probably wouldn't have finished it if l had been reading it.