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At Blackwater Abbey, on an island off the Devon coast, Lord Highmount has arranged a spiritualist gathering to contact his two sons who were lost in the conflict. For Blackwater Abbey is haunted in more ways than one .
Late 1944, and two teenagers dance the Vogue in silence on the projectionist's floor of the Cranfield Aerodrome. She draws the outlines of their footwork in eyebrow pencil on the white sheet. He loses their bet. Decades later, a ghost returns to Mourne to identify a body found in the shifting sands. Names have long since been changed; children long since cast out; lies long thought forgotten. Set against an eerie landscape, awash with secrets, The Vogue is a grimly poetic dance through the intertwined stories of a deeply religious community, an abandoned military base, and a long-shuttered children's Care Home.
In 1950s Manhattan, the CIA carry out a covert study of psychoactive drugs. When they dose ad man Ned Sweeney with MDT-48, he finds his horizons dramatically expand as he is hurtled through the corridors of the rich and powerful, all the way to the government's nuclear tests at Bikini Atoll. But what of Ned's colleague who was also dosed that night - last seen running half-naked and screaming into the Broadway traffic - and for how long can Ned maintain the extraordinary pace and trajectory of his new life?
It is the winter of 1893, and in London the snow is falling. It is falling as Gideon Bliss seeks shelter in a Soho church, where he finds Angie Tatton lying before the altar. His one-time love is at death's door, murmuring about brightness and black air, and about those she calls the Spiriters. In the morning she is gone. The snow is falling as a seamstress climbs onto a ledge above Mayfair, a mysterious message stitched into her own skin. It is falling as she steadies herself and closes her eyes. It is falling, too, as her employer, Lord Strythe, vanishes into the night, watched by Octavia Hillingdon, a restless society columnist who longs to uncover a story of real importance. She and Gideon will soon be drawn into the same mystery, each desperate to save Angie and find out the truth about Lord Strythe. Their paths will cross as the darkness gathers, and will lead them at last to what lies hidden at the house on Vesper Sands.