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Reviewed by Lesley Jones for Readers' Favorite
In Death's Captive by Scarlett Reed, a woman glides through the corridors of a London hospital; she never leaves because she cannot. No-one seems to know she exists, apart from those patients who need her assistance to remove their souls from their bodies and move on to the afterlife. Her only company is Niklaus, a ghostly figure who sometimes visits her. Niklaus has loved her since he first laid eyes on her. He also holds the key to her name and what caused her to be imprisoned inside the walls of the hospital. Gradually, Niklaus reveals details about her past for a price. As she tries to piece together the events of her life, she overhears the conversations of hospital staff that trigger disturbing memories of her past. When she discovers that a doctor and nurse at the hospital know of her existence, the events of that fateful day are uncovered. Will she regret finding out the truth and will she ever be able to leave the hospital and find peace?
Death's Captive by Scarlett Reed is such an incredibly interesting plot; the concept of a woman trapped inside a hospital helping the dying transition is fascinating. There are two plots running alongside each other, the staff at the hospital and the two entities, but both are connected very cleverly. The characters are vibrant, three-dimensional, and very relatable. I loved the relationship between Niklaus and the main character; theirs was such a tragic and complex love story. The storyline is multi-layered and gradually the layers are peeled away to reveal another shocking piece of information. There are many twists and turns through the plot that keep you guessing. I could not have predicted the reason why she found herself trapped within the hospital walls; it was a brilliant piece of storytelling. The novel also examines many moral questions and the issues medical staff have to face regarding life and death. I found the sections on a broken and shattered soul quite heartbreaking but the moments of transition for the deceased were incredibly heartwarming and soothing. I loved this novel and I highly recommend it to everyone who loves a story that makes them stop and ponder life's big questions.