A Legacy of Ghosts (Unspoken Voices Book 2)

It’s World War One. In a beautiful mansion on a hill, the ghosts of past ages and present nightmares weave coils around a nurse and a soldier. February 1915, the Great War is gathering momentum and Haigh Hall, home of the Earl of Balcarres, has been loaned as an auxiliary hospital. Locals know that the Hall and woods are haunted. Alice Martin returns to her home town to take up her new post as Matron after the sudden and mysterious death of her predecessor. Soldiers with terrible injuries have been sent to recover in the Hall that is surrounded by ancient woodland and wide landscapes. But each soldier brings with him phantoms from the war. Alice finds that one officer draws her attention whilst conflicts are brewing between the Hall staff, leading to the greatest danger for one of them.

The atmosphere is charged, and a fearful ghostly presence stalks the passageways of the Hall which stands on the site of much older dwellings. Alice must negotiate on all fronts to ensure the hospital runs well and to do this she enlists the help of her friend, Sophia, a clairvoyant and medium.

A novel for adults. 439 pages.

The Unspoken Voices Trilogy: This is a series of three books, historical novels with a strong supernatural element. The three form the saga of people connected through family or the ties of friendship from the late Victorian period to WW1 in 1915 and finally WW2 in 1940. All are set in or near Manchester.

The main characters are all women. The first, the Victorian, is a female undertaker who is clairvoyant. Her fiancé is a police sergeant. She’s threatened by a mysterious killer who stalks the city one hot summer. The second is a nursing matron and a widow who takes a post at an auxiliary hospital in WW1 where both supernatural and human evil threatens the most vulnerable. The third book, in WW2 has two main female characters, one a journalist with the Manchester evening News and unmarried, and the other secretary to the undertaker. She is happily married with two children and heavily pregnant.

The romantic relationships change and develop for each of the women and although the men are very important in the stories, it’s the women’s lives and voices that the reader focuses on. Each woman faces threats to her life or that of someone she cares for. Sometimes this comes from a living person, sometimes a malevolent supernatural presence and sometimes from the environmental and historical circumstances at the time. All the women take advantage of the opportunities that open for women in their own time, but not without facing and overcoming the difficulties that arise.

Amazon Kindle Edition >

Postage & Packaging:

Adult Books: 1st class – £4.45, 2nd class – £3.35
Children’s Books: 1st class – £2.65, 2nd class – £2.15
Books dispatched same day first class post.

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Rhona Whiteford

Author & Artist

About Rhona Whiteford

What inspires me to write? People and places, to begin with, reading stories endlessly, being an avid watcher of TV drama, film and of course, theatre; all are grist to my mill. I love old or unusual buildings and once inside I wonder who lived or worked there and what happened in their lives. But more than the buildings I’m inspired by landscape and atmosphere – wild beaches, dark forest, inner city glass and chrome or dense slum housing. The people in my stories exist in these places and each setting, the landscape, the climate, the season, affects their lives and the action of the story. I like to have significant animals present in my books as they’re a vital part of my life.

I’ve been writing continuously for 37 years and will admit it’s an obsession now. I began with primary teachers’ and children’s educational resources, moved on to children’s fiction for that age group and am now immersed in fiction for adults.

History inspires me. The way people lived, the early medieval period in Britain, Victorians and the 20th century are all fascinating. My debut adult fiction was Breaking points, a murder in inner city Manchester primary school. Tensions can be high in a small community.

I’m also very interested in the supernatural and how different characters react to the idea. I like Einstein’s view: ‘The distinction between the past, present and future is only a stubbornly persistent illusion.’

My family and I spent many years holidaying in a cottage on an isolated beach in Aberffraw, Anglesey. This village was once the main Llys of Prince Llewelyn the Great and with the history, the view and Einstein’s philosophy it didn’t take long to think of a story. I wrote The house between time, a time slip novel set in the present and in 13th century Anglesey. I’ve planned a prequel for this and have written the first chapter and will continue when I’ve finished the book I’m on now.

I’m completing a three book series, Legacy. A series wasn’t planned. I began by writing a Victorian thriller with supernatural overtones, A bouquet of Nightshade, set in 1895 in Manchester, the main character being a young woman, Sophia, who is an undertaker and also clairvoyant. A killer stalks the city preying on other young professional women and it’s her gift that helps unmask him. Her maid and confident is Alice, a miner’s daughter from Wigan and readers asked what happened to her later on.

Twenty years later was WW1 so Alice reappeared, having become educated and now a nursing matron assigned in 1915 to the Auxiliary hospital at Haigh Hall, Wigan in A legacy of ghosts, a ghost story and wartime romance.

I couldn’t desert Alice and Sophia and also a young maid, Florrie, so by 1940 they’re all together in WW2, during the Christmas blitz in Manchester. And it’s together they confront the enemy within, the dreaded fifth column and the supernatural presences at Ordsall Hall, Salford.

I’m halfway through writing this.

​Where do I write? In my office at an old mahogany desk with loads of drawers. I have a beautiful view, but it doesn’t distract me. It's simply good to have. I also have two very large dogs to keep a sleeping watch as I work.

How do I write? Exclusively on screen (a very big one). I make notes on paper or mostly post-it notes but think things through when doing washing up or ironing, or in bed in the dark – not sleeping. I re-read what I’ve written all the time. I like to do a lot of historical research, on the internet, with books and visiting the places I write about and trying out whatever cake’s on offer.

When do I write? Whenever I can, every day, a few hours or more. I never stare into space, pondering; I go and do something else for a minute or an hour and come back with the idea.

Favourite book: Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte

Favourite place: home

Favourite animals: dogs and horses

Favourite artist: Botticelli

Favourite music: Mozart, Elvis and Blue Grass

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    Two women, one war.

    Almost Christmas, December 1940 and the enemy unleashed a blitzkrieg on Manchester. Two women, out in the city on the first night, are caught in the fury of the raid. Set against the background of a second world war, this is the story of Marianne and Florrie, two very different women joined by long family friendship, but both facing a crisis point in their lives.

    Marianne Barkley, daughter of a serving general is one of the Manchester Evening News’ top reporters and is out looking for a story; but she has a secret love that threatens her judgement. Florrie Mason, once a maid at Haigh Hall, and now a secretary to an undertaker, is heavily pregnant and desperate to get home.
    Florrie’s route home lies past Ordsall Hall. This ancient and troubled place, once a splendid Tudor mansion, always pulls Florrie’s attention. As a medium, voices from the Hall’s past cry out to her; but on the night of the air raid, she felt a new presence bearing down on her, an evil and powerful spirit. In the following weeks, events conspire, and tensions build to a critical level bringing the two women together in a dangerous finale.

    The Unspoken Voices Trilogy: This is a series of three books, historical novels with a strong supernatural element. The three form the saga of people connected through family or the ties of friendship from the late Victorian period to WW1 in 1915 and finally WW2 in 1940. All are set in or near Manchester.

    The main characters are all women. The first, the Victorian, is a female undertaker who is clairvoyant. Her fiancé is a police sergeant. She’s threatened by a mysterious killer who stalks the city one hot summer. The second is a nursing matron and a widow who takes a post at an auxiliary hospital in WW1 where both supernatural and human evil threatens the most vulnerable. The third book, in WW2 has two main female characters, one a journalist with the Manchester evening News and unmarried, and the other secretary to the undertaker. She is happily married with two children and heavily pregnant.

    The romantic relationships change and develop for each of the women and although the men are very important in the stories, it’s the women’s lives and voices that the reader focuses on. Each woman faces threats to her life or that of someone she cares for. Sometimes this comes from a living person, sometimes a malevolent supernatural presence and sometimes from the environmental and historical circumstances at the time. All the women take advantage of the opportunities that open for women in their own time, but not without facing and overcoming the difficulties that arise.

    Amazon Kindle Edition >

    Postage & Packaging:

    Adult Books: 1st class – £4.45, 2nd class – £3.35
    Children’s Books: 1st class – £2.65, 2nd class – £2.15
    Books dispatched same day first class post.

    • Author:Rhona Whiteford
    £8.99Add to basket
  • A Bouquet of Nightshade (Unspoken Voices Book 1) £8.99

    Manchester 1895. In the midst of a heatwave, a sinister killer stalks the city.  One by one the victims are brought to Arnold Kelley and Daughter – Undertakers of Distinction for their professional services. Sophia Kelley is clairvoyant, and the souls of the victims reach out to her. She experiences visions of their relationship with the killer; she sees their terrible deaths at his hands. In 1888, Jack the Ripper’s victims were all working girls and the Manchester killer is equally selective. He chooses young, middle-class women who are tall, blonde and engaged in professions that in previous decades had been taken by men. Sophia is such a one. Society’s attitude to women is changing and the killer objects.

    Sophia is engaged to marry a police sergeant, Nathaniel Roberts, and they each uncover clues to the killer’s identity which do not blend until almost the last moment, when both their lives hang in the balance.

    A novel for adults. 446 pages.

    The Unspoken Voices Trilogy: This is a series of three books, historical novels with a strong supernatural element. The three form the saga of people connected through family or the ties of friendship from the late Victorian period to WW1 in 1915 and finally WW2 in 1940. All are set in or near Manchester.

    The main characters are all women. The first, the Victorian, is a female undertaker who is clairvoyant. Her fiancé is a police sergeant. She’s threatened by a mysterious killer who stalks the city one hot summer. The second is a nursing matron and a widow who takes a post at an auxiliary hospital in WW1 where both supernatural and human evil threatens the most vulnerable. The third book, in WW2 has two main female characters, one a journalist with the Manchester evening News and unmarried, and the other secretary to the undertaker. She is happily married with two children and heavily pregnant.

    The romantic relationships change and develop for each of the women and although the men are very important in the stories, it’s the women’s lives and voices that the reader focuses on. Each woman faces threats to her life or that of someone she cares for. Sometimes this comes from a living person, sometimes a malevolent supernatural presence and sometimes from the environmental and historical circumstances at the time. All the women take advantage of the opportunities that open for women in their own time, but not without facing and overcoming the difficulties that arise.

    Amazon Kindle Edition >

    Postage & Packaging:

    Adult Books: 1st class – £4.45, 2nd class – £3.35
    Children’s Books: 1st class – £2.65, 2nd class – £2.15
    Books dispatched same day first class post.

    • Author:Rhona Whiteford
    £8.99Add to basket
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