Blog Tour: The Lynmouth Stories, L.V. Hay

Book Review: The Lynmouth Stories, L.V. Hay


The Lynmouth Stories Cover

Short Stories: The Lynmouth Stories, L.V. Hay

Blog Tour April 26, 2021


While preparing for this book I ran across an article from a British newspaper excitedly advertising the forthcoming book from Devon’s own Lucy Hay. After reading the book, I am not sure the Lynmouth Board of Tourism (if there is one) would be quite as enthusiastic. The book is great. L.V. Hay is an excellent writer and this short story collection showcases her skills with words, with character, and with setting.


It also has persuaded me that a trip to Lynmouth could be very, very dangerous.


In all fairness, the plots could be set almost anywhere. A young mother and her son are kidnapped and held captive by a farmer just outside of Lynmouth. Another young woman deals with a twisted lover that may be much more than she realizes him to be. And a third young woman and her infant child are caught between an increasingly violent husband/father and an oncoming storm that threatens the entire town. Each of these plots has twists and turns and enough creepiness that they can steal sleep and send chills up and down your spine.


But the plots are not set anywhere. They are set in Lynmouth. And Hay’s descriptions of the village and the countryside are as foreboding and dark as Wuthering Heights’ description of the moors. The Lynmouth of these stories has cloudy skies and boarded-up windows and often-empty streets and stormy seas and starless nights. It is a place where a violent kidnapper can escape detection even when he brings his captives into town. It is a place where a man with dark tendencies can spiral into the depths of his own psyche. It is a place where a young woman can disappear with few noting or caring for her absence.


Then again, Salem, MA, has made witch-trials into a tourist attraction, so maybe I’m underestimating the appeal of the dark.


The Lynmouth Stories is a quick read, three short stories, almost designed to tell around a campfire on a dark night. Not quite ghost stories, not quite thrillers, each leaves you wanting more even though they give you quite a bit. Every good concert ends too soon, every good movie is too short, every good story plays on afterward in your mind. These short stories are as good as you will find, told by a master writer, tapping on fears and darkness you may not have known were in you. If you are looking for a short book that will leave a lasting impression on your psyche, find this book.


Just don’t use it as a Lynmouth travel guide. The Tourism Board would not be pleased.



Our thanks to Anne Cater of Random Things Blog Tours for our electronic copy of The Lynmouth Stories, given solely in exchange for our honest review. The opinions here are those of Scintilla. For other perspectives on this book, check out the other bloggers participating on this tour. 


The Lynmouth Stories Cover

Book Review: The Lynmouth Stories, L.V. Hay

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