Seventeen-year-old Violeta Graceling has spent her life in an isolated cottage, trying to protect herself from her mother’s cruelty. When Rowan Sylvanan, the so-called Monster of Lakesedge, offers Violeta a position at his neglected estate, she takes the opportunity, hoping it will provide the safe haven she has always longed for.

Violeta wants to make the estate her home, but there are dangers within the unexpected beauty of Lakesedge. Shadows fill her room at night, and a sinister voice calls her name from the darkness. As she investigates Lakesedge’s tragic history, she discovers shy, prickly Rowan is far from a monster. And when their friendship turns into romance, Violeta learns Rowan’s terrible secret. He was saved from drowning as a child by the Lord Under— an evil being who rules over the world Below— and resurrected in exchange for his family’s lives. Now he is bound to the estate by a curse that is slowly devouring him.

As the curse overwhelms Rowan—and the estate—Violeta is faced with an impossible choice. She can end the curse by giving up her life to the Lord Under, or watch everything she loves, and the only home she’s ever known, be destroyed.

Crimson Peak meets Wintersong in this dark retelling of The Secret Garden.

Inspiration board
Music playlist

L-R Art by Ivelisse Housman, Alex Huff, Sarah C. Street