Jodie Cook

The Ghosts of Thorwald Place by Helen Power

Book Review

Title: The Ghosts of Thorwald Place by Helen Power

Genre: Mystery, Thriller, Horror


Trust no one. Especially your neighbors.

Rachel Drake is on the run from the man who killed her husband. She never leaves her safe haven in an anonymous doorman building, until one night a phone call sends her running. On her way to the garage, she is murdered in the elevator. But her story doesn’t end there.

She finds herself in the afterlife, tethered to her death spot, her reach tied to the adjacent apartments. As she rides the elevator up and down, the lives of the residents intertwine. Every one of them has a dark secret. An aging trophy wife whose husband strays. A surgeon guarding a locked room. A TV medium who may be a fraud. An ordinary man with a mysterious hobby. Compelled to spend eternity observing her neighbors, she realizes that any one of them could be her killer. And then, her best friend shows up to investigate her murder.

Rating: 4.5 Stars

I honestly wasn’t expecting much from The Ghosts of Thorwald Place because I have read many similar books in the past and while I have enjoyed them not many of them really stood out to me but this book definitely did. We are following Rachel who after the murder of her husband becomes agoraphobic until something scares her so badly into fleeing her old life which results in her death. This isn’t a spoiler as it happens very early on in the book which I wasn’t expecting and the entire novel is set in an apartment block in Thorwald Place. It is strange a murder happens here since the building has strict security measures, guards and CCTV watching everything and everyone all the time.

Rachel despite being a recluse meets an horrific end and seems completely aware of the fact she has been murdered which was an interesting take. As the story progresses with our ghostly protagonist we work our way through each floor and get to know the many residents living there in search of Rachel’s murderer. Despite this we learn that all the residents have secrets that they would like to remain hidden which means we suspect each and every character besides Rachel since she is dead. Rachel is in a prime spot to find her killer since she is now invisible and gets to view the lives of her fellow residents and soon comes to the conclusion that most of them could have killed and she has particularly bad feelings about one character in particular because of the vibe he gives off. Rachel comments on the fact he thrives off pain, fear and hate that lives in all people and how this gives him power.

While this is essentially a murder mystery there are numerous dark and slightly gory elements that I loved as a horror fan so I would check the trigger warnings before getting into it but I would highly recommend it. The Ghosts of Thorwald Place has an amazing concepts with the victim observing the investigation of her own murder and watching people attempting to conceal the truth about themselves and their lives. Rachel’s constant movement around the building gives evidence to how powerless she is but it also drives the novel forward with us always learning something new about the characters. I really felt Rachel’s frustration and the suspense that Power sprinkles throughout was amazing. I was so eager to get to the end of the novel and find out who did it that I didn’t notice how quickly I was flying through the novel.

Overall, The Ghosts of Thorwald Place really surprised me especially since it is a debut novel. It had a great concept with amazing writing and characters that we really cared about although there seemed to be little that could be done about Rachel’s situation. I think this will be a book that I will re-read a few times in the future and wish every time that I could be reading it for the first time. If you are looking for a twisty, dark murder mystery then I’d highly recommend The Ghosts of Thorwald Place.

About the Author:

Helen Power is an academic librarian living in Saskatoon, Canada. In her spare time, she haunts deserted cemeteries, loses her heart to dashing thieves, and cracks tough cases, all from the comfort of her writing nook. She has several short story publications, including ones in Suspense Magazine, Hinnom Magazine, and Dark Helix Press’s Canada 150 anthology, “Futuristic Canada”. Her stories range from comedy to horror, with just a hint of dystopia in between. The Ghosts of Thorwald Place is her first novel.

Buy it here:


Kindle Edition:

  • Love
  • Save
    Add a blog to Bloglovin’
    Enter the full blog address (e.g.
    We're working on your request. This will take just a minute...