I just finished another of Barbara Michaels’ books. Someone in the House has all the woo-woo elements that anyone would want: a huge mansion, eerie noses in the night, and ghostly visions. This time, Anne goes to Grayhaven Manor in Pennsylvania. The plan is for her and her buddy, Kevin, to spend the summer writing an English textbook. Anne’s boyfriend, Joe, is off to on a research project in Europe, and Anne is left on her own. The problem is the house. First, Bea, Kevin’s aunt, comments on noises coming from Kevin’s room. Bea assumes that is it Kevin and Anne making out. Of course, Bea is somewhat offended. The book was written in 1980/1981, and older folks weren’t as accommodating to unmarried sex. However, it isn’t Anne, but a ghostly visitor that Kevin is getting busy with. Bea, Bea’s new paramour, Roger, and Anne try to figure out what the cause is behind the ghostly visits. Father Steven, the local priest is also called into action.
This book was quite eerie, and it didn’t follow the usual Michaels formula. As a spoiler, Anne and Kevin do notfind romantic happiness in the end. In fact, there really isn’t a good resolution to the mystery of the ghostly visits at all, other than Anne’s thesis that the house wants to make all of its inhabitants happy. The following book, Black Rainbow tells the earlier story of the Mandevilles in the house, but that book doesn’t have anything more than some vague comments about Megan feeling very content in the house. Anyway, Someone in the House was a great page-turner, and I found myself enjoying it. Even though there wasn’t romance at the end, I rooted for Anne and her decision. I can’t wait to read more of Michaels’ books in the near future.