Moving from the heart of Brighton to the Sussex countryside. Ollie Harcourt, his wife, Caro, and their twelve-year-old daughter, Jade hopes to make a huge, dilapidated, Georgian mansion their next project and a springboard to bigger things. Cold Hill House may well be a money pit, but this house hides secrets that put in danger more than the family’s finances.
Much like Don’t Look Back, the basic premise behind The House on Cold Hill is nothing new, Netflix’s Haunting of Hill House follows a very similar plot. But unlike the well-crafted TV series filled with interesting characters and tons of emotion, James fails to make the reader care about our leads, most especially Ollie, a man who is presented as this supposedly smart guy, yet repeatedly makes stupid decisions, including ignoring the numerous issues flagged up in the house inspection, not paying attention any of the warnings he is given and despite spending most of the book complaining about how tight money is, barely a sentence goes by when he’s not purchasing something. But worst of all, when you find a dead body you call the police, not go for a bike ride.