Read Our Mother's House by Julian Gloag Online


"Mother died at five fifty-eight."So begins this story of seven extraordinary children who, faced with the unknown terrors of an orphanage, decide not to report their mother's death.They bury her in the garden and build a tabernacle over her grave. To the outside world they pretend she is ill and confined to her room.Their problems begin immediately. Curious officials make"Mother died at five fifty-eight."So begins this story of seven extraordinary children who, faced with the unknown terrors of an orphanage, decide not to report their mother's death.They bury her in the garden and build a tabernacle over her grave. To the outside world they pretend she is ill and confined to her room.Their problems begin immediately. Curious officials make inquiries, well-meaning neighbors offer assistance. The children themselves fall to quarreling.Then a spellbinding stranger appears, claiming to be their father. He agrees to keep their secret -- and from that point the story moves relentlessly to its incredible climax....

Title : Our Mother's House
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780671435318
Format Type : Mass Market Paperback
Number of Pages : 295 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Our Mother's House Reviews

  • Barbara Storey
    2019-04-12 22:19

    I read this book when i was a kid, and I remember loving it. SO creepy, so scary! I would love to find a copy of it again, and see how it holds up!

  • Stefanie Price
    2019-04-06 20:12

    Having purchased this tatty, ancient-looking book on a stall outside Harvard University in Boston, Massachussets, I was surprised to discover it was actually a british novel. The style is noticeably dated, with the characters' phraseology being quite antiquated - definitely not the way children in recent decades would speak. I was also expecting a tale of children struggling to survive independently following the death of their mother. Trying to avoid the orphanage and not wanting to be separated from each other, they bury her in the back garden and resume business as usual. Instead of a cosy tale of childish pluck, what the reader is confronted with is the power struggles which occur when the head of a household is removed. Who will be the leader of the pack, and by what rules will they govern themselves. I'm reminded of Lord of the Flies, as the children succumb to religious fervour - holding seances called 'Mothertime' which supposedly evoke their dead mother's voice through Diana, the vague, mysterious second-oldest. Or Dunstan's cruel brutality which leads to the ultimate death of his 5 year old sister, Gerty, who he shockingly blames for submitting to the sexual abuse of a strange man at the garage, and punishes by cutting off all her hair and forcing everyone to ignore her. Or Hubert, the voice of reason who just wants everyone to get along and get things done - keep things running in as practical a manner possible. Things don't go well, as after all, these are just children, the oldest only 13. They even decide it's a good idea to steal and adopt an unhappy boy from 8 yr old Jiminee's school, nearly giving themselves away when their teacher visits, full of suspicion. All this comes to an end when their long lost patriarch appears, having received a letter pleading for help from Hubert. After a little initial wariness, the children are quick to place their trust and love in Charlie 'ook, whose true character shines brightly enough for the reader to immediately see. He's a nasty piece of work - drinking, smoking, womanising, gambling and generally spending his estranged dead wife's savings, even starting the process of selling the house from under the children. All the while they adore him and even cast aside the ideals they were brought up with to accommodate his bad habits. The story draws to a dramatic conclusion when the kids find out their 'father's' true nature (and in turn the truth about their revered dead mother who turns out to be less than the wholesome matriarch), and take matters into their own hands. Nothing about this book is warm and cosy and at times it trudges along at an infuriatingly tedious pace. A little more warmth and personality in the children could have drawn the reader into their plight a little, but somehow the tone just falls a little flat. I've been recommended 'The Cement Garden', which apparently explores a similar story in a more modern fashion. What I would love, however, is to see this brought to life on film and have discovered that a movie exists, starring Dirk Bogarde and Mark Lester of 'Oliver!' fame. Now I just need to track it down...

  • Stephanie
    2019-03-26 23:15

    Our Mother's House is one of those cult favorites that appeals to people like me, who led an unconventional childhood. As someone who didn't have much adult supervision as a kid, I've always enjoyed stories where children have to act as adults. This novel is wonderfully refreshing on that score, and belongs alongside similar greats like A High Wind in Jamaica, The Lord of the Flies, The Little Girl Who Lives Down the Lane,, and Where the Lillies Bloom. Goooood stuff.

  • Chantel
    2019-04-06 18:34

    I read this book in my spare time on a Caribbean cruise with fellow members. I traded the book during our wish list book swap. It was mildly interesting and a short book so a fast read but not a page turner. A large family in England (mom and six kids) is dealt a cruel blow when Mother dies after a lengthy illness. The kids, not wanting to be split up, decide to bury mother in the back yard and keep cashing her monthly checks. Except for some psychosis and god-like reverence to their mother's spirit, they do alright on their own until, in an act of desperation, one of the boys writes to their alcoholic and estranged father and he returns. At first it seems like he has come to their rescue but it is soon clear that he is swindling his own kids out of everything they have. You'll want to read to the end to find out what happens with father and the children. Who will be caught? Who will be added to the death toll? and what is the ultimate fate for the orphaned children?

  • Debbie
    2019-03-24 17:09

    I read this book this month because, well, I was living in my mother’s house after her death.Originally published in 1963, this was one of my favourite books when I was a teenager in the sixties.In pre-internet days, books were harder to find, even though I was enjoying the adult library lending privilege of six books at a time. And it was rarer still for me to own a book and this, being definitely an adult book with child protagonists, made me feel grown-up while still identifying with the kids. So, it was a favourite even though it really isn’t all that good.In 1960s London, not wanting to be put in an orphanage and split up, a family of seven children bury their mother (dead of natural causes) in the backyard and say that she is too sick to receive visitors. Shades of The Death of Bees, but darker.I gather this was made into a 1967 film by British director Jack Clayton. 3½ stars

  • Nancy
    2019-03-31 16:28

    I tried. I gave this book 100 pages. I really did want to like this book, but it is impossible. The plot moves along achingly slowly, so slowly that I found my mind wandering and consequently unable to keep up with the S L O W moving plot. I read one lengthy paragraph about a minor character lighting a cigarette. That was it....just lighting a cigarette. I'm sure there's a good story in here, it just needs a good pruning. This book is excessively wordy.

  • Ron Dee
    2019-04-04 17:27

    Wonderfully written with masterfully real characterizations. A very one of kind novel both in its plot and the wordings in the writing that not only bring it to life and fasten it so cleverly and hauntingly in your heart, then keeps it alive there long long after the last page is read.

  • Fishface
    2019-04-03 18:33

    What a downer! There were a zillion of these books out when I was in Middle School, about kids trying to carry on without letting anyone know they've been orphaned. The different twist to this one was that it was set in England.

  • Carol
    2019-04-18 15:24

    I read this several times as a kid, but haven't read it as an adult. I'd like to see if it remains as creepy today as I thought it then.

  • W
    2019-04-15 20:23

    Si yo hubiese escrito esta historia no habría quien me tosiera, tendríais que sacarme en procesión y entregarme vuestros primogénitos. Pero la escribió un tal Gloag y ya está muerto.

  • Jessica
    2019-03-28 19:34

    Not your average book.

  • Robert
    2019-04-15 22:18

    Well done early 60s British tale of 7 orphaned children who decide to keep their mother's death a secret; somewhat reminiscent of Lord of the Flies, with lovely prose.