She comes in the night. She looks into your eyes. One by one, she has taken us all. In 1910, eleven-year-old Iris Villarca lives with her father at Rawblood, a lonely house on Dartmoor. Iris and her father are the last of their name. The Villarcas always die young, bloodily. Iris believes it's because of a congenital disease which means she must isolate herself from the world. But one sunlit autumn day, beside her mother's grave, she forces the truth from her father: the disease is biologically impossible. A lie, to cover a darker secret. The Villarcas are haunted, through the generations, by her. She is white, skeletal, covered with scars. When a Villarca marries, when they love, when they have a child - she comes and death follows. When Iris is fifteen, she breaks her promise to remain alone all her life, and the consequences are immediate and horrific.
Catriona Ward was born in Washington DC and grew up in the US, Kenya, Madagascar, Yemen and Morocco. She now lives in London where she works as a writer and researcher for Bianca Jagger's human rights foundation. Rawblood is her first novel. @Catrionaward