Something is wrong with Esme. Kicked out of school in New York, her sister sends her to live with their grandmother in the small town she hasn't visited since she was a child. But something is wrong with the grandmother Ez hasn't seen for years; she leaves the house at midnight, carrying a big black bag. Something is wrong with her grandmother's house, a decrepit mansion full of stray cats, stairs that lead to nowhere and beds that unmake themselves. Something is wrong in the town where a child disappears every year, where a whistle sounds at night but no train arrives. And something is definitely wrong with her cute and friendly neighbour with black curls and ice-blue eyes: he's dead.