Ozzy Turner is an amateur ‘cunning man’, someone who uses minor charms and spells to help people in the small town of Lost Falls, a town where magical creatures exist, but not exactly openly. While meeting with his mentor, Early, and a potential client about her haunted house, Early gets called away to deal with an angry troll. Bolstered by the fact that Ozzy has accompanied Early on many other cases, Ozzy tries this one alone.
Once at the haunted house, however, everything goes to hell. The house literally traps him and the woman inside, and when Ozzy finally gets his mentor on the phone, we learn that this is no ordinary home. Early burned this house down himself, yet here it was now, good as new. The house communicates with them only by telephone and has wooden creatures to rough them up if they don’t answer questions the way the house likes. And what questions does the house have? Simple. The house wants to know how Ozzy and this woman feel after having someone’s memories played straight into their brain through a cursed movie projector, making them feel as if they are these people. Except… the house thinks Ozzy is the man in the movie. And at the end of all the movies, it’s surely death for them both.
This was a great story that just jumped right into the supernatural world of this town in the middle of nowhere. This is a prequel story to Cunning Devil, the first book in the Lost Falls Series by Chris Underwood, (my review here) the prequel available by signing up for the author’s newsletter. Our hero, Ozzy Turner, is just finding his way as his own ‘cunning man’ in Crooked Foundations, and the next book, Cunning Devil, Book 1 of the series, is even better. I highly recommend this series for anyone who enjoys a paranormal who-dunnit with a likeable, though flawed hero.