The Stormy Petrel by Mary Stewart is an enjoyable short novel, with a touch of the gothic and romance. At first I expected that there was going to be more a twist at the end, but even though there wasn’t I thought it was a well-constructed storyline. In addition the writing is crisp, intelligent, and evocative. Especially given that I had just finished a very long so-so gothic romance/tragedy, I appreciated that this book was short but better than that one. I am inclined to believe the oft-said idea that writing something short is harder than writing something long.