Fun Amalgamation Of Scooby-Doo, Stranger Things, and The Sandlot. This is one of those fun, nostalgic types of kids-solving-mysteries tales that will bring back all of the above + Nancy Drew/ The Hardy Boys type vibes, as well as a touch of Johnny Quest. Now, if I’ve named enough popular franchises to get you this far, know that this book *does* still have its own feel – it isn’t merely a clone of the other franchises, though it does share a genre and general vibe with them. Here, Holloway manages to spin is own form of the tale and involve science fiction ala the *earliest* science fiction (yes, there’s a touch of Frankenstein and his monster involved here) while centering the tale in his own “native” (and actually native) Kentucky and Southern lore and mythology. Ultimately this is simply a fun romp through a simpler time that still had its evils and mysteries, and Holloway shows the period and style – and his own particular culture – particularly well. Very much recommended.
Haunting Yet Preachy. This is a book in the vein of if i stay, though here we know up front that our narrator is dead – and she knows it. Still, when searching through my memories trying to find a comparison point, that is what comes up and I think the comparison works. This tale has a similar haunting effect, not from the haunting itself (though the narrator is, if anything, a benevolent ghost just trying to be helpful), but more from the style of the story being told. There is a lot of trauma here in terms of child molestation/ exploitation (though within the last few months pre-18th birthday, at least on screen). adultery, abuse, and safety generally. It is on this last point – safety generally – that this book veers too far into the “preachy” side, hammering the reader over the head several times with its own metaphorical version of the murder weapon used here, and this is the reason for the star deduction. Still, overall the tale is solid if a touch slow, but interesting enough to want to find out what is going on and to keep reading through the end. Very much recommended.
This entire spinoff series has been my entry point into Pine’s universe, and I’ve been very impressed so far. She manages to bring the paranormal and the normal together in ways rarely seen in other similar efforts, all while keeping the series focused on the people involved even as the individual books feature specific cases. (As the better long running series – in any medium – tend to do.)
This particular book is a typical entry in that vein – we open up dealing with the aftermath of the ending of Ghost of a Chance (Book 5), and because of that at minimum that book needs to be read before that one. But even that book deals with the events from the very first book in this spinoff series, Ghost of Himself. (And on and on and on :D) So read all six books – because by the end of this one Pine basically calls her shot with presumably the next book, and it is one that has been building since even before this spinoff series began.
This book in particular was Pine’s usual excellence in storytelling and execution, and I am very much looking forward to Book 7! 🙂
And with that… the Goodreads/ Amazon review:
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