Tag Archive | Ghosts

The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

There is a house that rests nearby an ancient graveyard. One night the man named Jack enters the house and murders the family living there, all except for a little baby that unintentionally escaped to the graves. Too young to know his own name, the ghosts of the graveyard adopt him and christen him ‘Nobody Owens’ or Bod for short. Shielding the baby from danger, the ghosts become his family, his friends and teachers.

With a guardian to provide food and teachings of the world, Bod grows from a baby to a boy then teenager. But the graveyard isn’t what it seems and there are dangers that Bod can’t understand that coexist with the friendly haunts. As the years pass and Bod grow restless for knowledge about himself and the world, he’ll have to rely on his wit and ghostly friends as the man named Jack is still on the hunt for him…

Beautifully illustrated and decorated with in depth characters, alive or not, Gaiman is the master at creating environments that readers just accept. The ghosts are hauntingly intriguing and the setting of the graveyard with its secret nooks and creatures is beautifully crafted to lure the reader in.

Although a bit long for my taste, The Graveyard Book is still a wonderful adventure to behold. Gaiman is a talented writer and nothing is lost throughout this book. What Gaiman excels at is providing settings and characters that don’t need a full explanation, but are better left up to the discretion of the reader. The beginning is shrouded in mysterious, the middle full of complex lessons and adventures, but the ending is exciting and before you know it the book has ended. Like Stephen King, Gaiman is able to create constantly new material each book, nothing repeats and it’s never boring. The Graveyard Book is a great YA novel for those looking for something with a bit more depth and mystery.

Day 18 – 30 Day Book Challenge

I read The Time Traveler’s Wife for my MA and thoroughly enjoyed it. When I saw Niffenegger’s newest novel in the bookstore, I couldn’t help but be excited by the back blurb: Ghosts, set in London with a mysterious secret….it sounded amazing! Once I had the chance to get it from the library, I dived right in and was stuck there for a week. I was entranced, I was in love (mostly due to the London setting), but as I continued further there were issues with the story. The ending sealed the deal as being the worst ending ever, and making me utter disappointed with a book that had such promise. With weak characters and an unrealistic premise I tried to like the book and nearly was there, but the end. Sigh, the ending is the biggest bit of drivel and for working in childcare as long as I have; it’s just not believable. I expected a lot from her and I don’t know if Niffenegger can come back from this.

Ever by Jessa Russo

As a homeschooled student, seventeen-year-old Ever’s love life hasn’t had the most impressive track record. She’s been in love with her neighbour Frankie since she was nine, but for the past two years they’ve been stuck in the friend zone where it will remain forever. Killed in a car accident, Frankie’s ghost lingers around the home with Ever and her family.

He’s a permanent fixture in her heart until Toby, the hot new neighbour moves into Frankie’s old house. He’s a real, breathing and very attractive guy who’s totally into Ever. It’s kind of hard to start dating with a dead kind of ex-boyfriend hovering throughout the house. As Ever spends more time with Toby, Frankie continues to warn her, but there’s more to Toby than just his passion and good looks. He’s hiding something and Ever soon is risking more than her heart as jealousy and tragedy tear through her life.

I had a tough time getting into Ever. I thought the concept of Frankie was awesome but there wasn’t enough of his character in the beginning. I didn’t enjoy how Toby immediately hits on Ever when she introduces herself the day he moves in. I felt it was just a bit too strong. I wasn’t impressed with the story and it was painfully slow. It also reminded/felt very Twilight-esque, which isn’t a good thing. I knew this was a first in a serious so I held on hoping it would pick up.

It took getting past the first 100 pages for the story to hit 0 to 60. Suddenly I found myself so engrossed in the book I couldn’t put it down. Remember, this is YA and I think Russo has hit the nail on the head for her audience; she gives them what they want. Sometimes YA can have the potential to be an adult crossover, but this is not one of those books. It’s got drama; a ridiculous love triangle and an interesting take on what keeps ghosts around. There’s a personal link for me within this story and that’s also one of the reasons I kept reading. If you’re looking for a quick, not too complicated romance, Ever will help kill some hours and give plenty of emotions for discussion. As the first in the series, I can’t wait to read what happens next. 

Ever is available now!

Get it as an ebook for those in the UK

This book was provided as an ARC from Curiosity Quills Press for an honest review. Many thanks to the wonderful publisher and Net Galley!