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Tuesday, July 02, 2013

Ghost Stories and Relatively Dead

Ghost stories:  some good, some bad; some scary, some funny; some are for children, some for adults. 

 Peter Straub's Ghost Story was very frightening, but it has been many years since I read it, and mostly what I remember is the terrible suspense.  Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children was...strange and, well, peculiar, and came with great illustrations.  Henry James' The Turn of the Screw is my personal favorite because it is so ambiguous.  The Ghost and Mrs. Muir by R.A. Dick is charming, and Tom's Midnight Garden is a book for youngsters, more magical than frightening. 

 I've read many more novels featuring ghosts because the supernatural appeals to me, and the idea of communing with ghosts can be either entertaining  or creepy.  Dead Like Me is a black comedy that I watched on Netflix and thoroughly enjoyed, but checking on it a few minutes ago, the series starring Mandy Patinkin no longer seems to be available.

On to Relatively Dead, a mild-mannered ghost story that features a young woman named Abby who, on a visit to a historic house, "sees" a scene from an early time and the various family members who lived there.  Shocked and disoriented, she is fed tea and sympathy by Ned, the young man who shows the house, and he appears willing to accept her vision.  

Abby continues to have experiences that lead her to continue searching for a reason that she is able to make a connection to this particular past; Ned, the guide who befriends her on the historic house tour, aids her investigations.

Not at all frightening, the novel has some interesting historic accounts of the Lexington/Concord areas of Massachusetts.  The plot is bland and the relationships predictable.  Not terrible.  Not exciting.  

NetGalley/Beyond the Page Publishing.

Paranormal.  2013.  Print version:  211 pages.


  1. I love a good ghost story--although I'm not a fan of the scary kind. That's too bad this wasn't better for you, although the historical aspects sound interesting.

  2. It was one of those "OK" books. I didn't mind reading it, but not that great.